More countries may impose the death penalty against homosexuality
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Foreign In five of the world's countries, homosexuality is punishable by death, and two additional countries may be about to impose the same penalty. It shows a new report from the U.S. organization Human Rights First.
The countries that currently prescribe the death penalty for homosexuals, Iran, Mauritania, Sudan, Saudi Arabia and Yemen. Even the world's newest nation, Southern Sudan, may be about to impose the same penalty, and Uganda - the religious extremists in the country get their way. Even in some parts of Somalia and Nigeria apply the death penalty against homosexuals.
C. Dixon Osburn at Human Rights First points out that many of the regimes that condemns homosexuals to death also violates many other human rights.
- In countries applying the death penalty can be critical of the government have dire consequences, says Osburn.
The current legislation in the predominantly Christian Southern Sudan is based no longer on the Sharia laws in force as long as the country was part of Sudan. But homosexuality has remained strictly prohibited.
- They have just introduced a ten-year prison sentence, but has yet to introduce the death penalty, says Osburn.
Southern Sudan President Salva Kiir Mayardit announced recently, however, that democracy, equality and justice are not any values that include homosexuals. The president said that while the recognition of homosexuality is not "part of our character."
- It's not even something that one can speak of here in Southern Sudan. It's not here and if anyone wants to import or to export it so it will be condemned by all, said President Mayardit.
In Uganda, where homosexuality is already prohibited, the Honourable David Bahati has submitted a bill that would mean that homosexuals can face the death penalty. The proposal would also criminalize activists working for LGBT rights, and provide that all citizens have to report people they suspect are gay.
In January this year killed the Ugandan gayaktivisten David Kato, after the local newspaper published an article with pictures and home addresses to Kato and other homosexuals under the heading "Hang them."
C. Dixon Osburn believes that the development in Uganda is reminiscent of a lynchmobbs rampage.
- There is a elected MP who put forward this proposal and is contrary to it. He believes that homosexuals are evil, and has been supported by the media which presented this McCarthy-like list, says Osburn.
One of the leading champions of Bahatis bill is Pastor Martin Ssempa, who had contacts with American conservative Christians.
- It is both sad and frightening that homophobia in Uganda supported by evangelists from the United States. They have gone there and whip up sentiments, said Joe Beasley, president of the Christian African American organization ascension.
While proponents of the law argue that homosexuality is an "import from the West" therefore, there is evidence that homophobia is in fact an import from the United States.
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