UK government ‘concerned’ about Uganda’s anti-gay law
The UK government has released a statement on the proposals in Uganda to execute people who have gay sex following condemnation of the bill from France and America.
The bill, currently before parliament in the African country, would create a new crime of “aggravated homosexuality”.
Those convicted of having gay sex with disabled people and those under the 18 would face the death penalty.
The bill also imposes life imprisonment on those who have homosexual sex. Although this is already the case in Uganda, the new law widens the definition of the offence.
Other offence include promoting homosexuality, aiding and abetting homosexuality and keeping a house “for purposes of homosexuality”.
In a statement given to PinkNews.co.uk, a spokeswoman from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office said: “We are concerned by the introduction of a private member’s bill on anti homosexuality in Uganda.
“Adoption of the bill could do serious damage to efforts to tackle HIV and its criminalisation of organisations that support homosexuality could, in theory, encompass most donor agencies and international NGOs.
“The UK, alongside our EU partners, has raised our concerns about the draft bill and LGBT rights more broadly with the government of Uganda, including with the prime minister and several other ministers, the Ugandan Human Rights Commission, and senior officials from the Ugandan Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
“We will continue to track the passage of the bill and to lobby against its introduction.”
This week, France’s foreign ministry released a statement condemning the bill. It said: “France expresses deep concern regarding the bill currently before the Ugandan parliament.
“France reiterates its commitment to the decriminalisation of homosexuality and the fight against discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity.”
In America, leana Ros-Lehtinen, (Republican, Miami), Tammy Baldwin, (Democrat, Wisconsin), Gary Ackerman, (Democrat, New York) and Howard Berman, (Democrat, California), have written to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton warning that it had severe implications for the freedom and safety of gay people.
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