15 avril 2024

Uganda: reactions to new anti-LGBT law

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Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni has ratified a new anti-LGBT law, widely condemned by human rights activists but supported by many in the East African country.

However, some consider that legislating on the LGBT issue is not a priority when fundamental rights such as access to education and health services are being trampled underfoot.

The version signed by Yoweri Museveni does not criminalize people who identify as LGBTQ, unlike the previous bill.

However, the new law still provides for the death penalty for "aggravated homosexuality", defined as sexual relations with HIV-infected persons or minors.

Mr. Museveni had sent the bill back to the National Assembly in April, calling for amendments to distinguish between identifying as LGBTQ and engaging in homosexual acts, angering some lawmakers who feared he was bowing to international pressure.

LGBTQ rights advocates say the new legislation is unnecessary in a country where homosexuality has long been illegal under a colonial-era law criminalizing unnatural sexual activity.