Ugandan Law Could Mean Life in Prison for LGBTI Persons | Freedom House

Ugandan Law Could Mean Life in Prison for LGBTI Persons

UPDATE: On February 10, 2014, Freedom House is joining human rights groups in a global day of action against Uganda’s Anti-Homosexuality Bill. The climate for LGBTI persons in Uganda is hostile, and the threat the anti-homosexuality bill poses to LGBTI people reiterates the need for President Museveni to reject the bill in an effort to protect the fundamental freedoms of Ugandans.
Use hashtag #stopAHB to join the day of action on social media.

Freedom House strongly condemns the Ugandan parliament’s approval of anti-homosexuality and anti-pornography bills and calls on President Yoweri Museveni to reject the anti-homosexuality measure and return the anti-pornography bill to parliament for major revisions.

“We are deeply concerned by parliament's distortion of local values, in its restrictions on universal human rights and stigmatization of LGBTI persons,” said Chloe Schwenke, vice president of global programs at Freedom House. “Human dignity is eroded when wearing a short skirt or loving the "wrong" person becomes a crime."

Freedom House is deeply concerned by Uganda’s series of restrictions on fundamental freedoms. The anti-homosexuality law allows for punishment of up to life imprisonment for acts of homosexuality. It also makes it a crime to “promote” homosexuality.

The anti-pornography law’s vague definition of pornography lends itself to a variety of interpretations and abuse.  As reported by Uganda's Daily Monitor newspaper, the law outlaws any material or public display of sexual body parts, such as breasts, thighs, buttocks, or genitalia, in addition to any indecent behavior intended to cause sexual excitement.

Uganda is rated Partly Free in Freedom in the World 2013, Freedom of the Press 2013 and Freedom on the Net 2013.

Learn more:

Freedom in the World 2013: Uganda
Freedom of the Press 2013: Uganda
Blog: Freedom at Issue