In Uganda, two men became the latest victims of the country’s severe anti-LGBTQ+ laws after being arrested for allegedly having sex during a rainstorm in Kampala. A student, sheltering nearby, recorded the incident and alerted security guards, leading to the men’s arrest. They remain in custody, facing severe penalties under laws that criminalize same-sex relationships, with life imprisonment for “homosexuality” and the death penalty for “aggravated homosexuality.”
International Opposition to Uganda’s Legislation
The Anti-Homosexuality Act, signed into law by President Yoweri Museveni in May, has met with strong international opposition. U.S. Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre condemned the legislation as “deeply concerning” and “one of the most extreme anti-LGBTQI+ laws in the world.” The World Bank responded by cutting off new funding to Uganda, citing that the law contradicts its values of inclusion and non-discrimination.
Continued Arrests Despite Criticism
Despite international backlash, Ugandan authorities persist in arresting individuals suspected of same-sex relations. In August, a 20-year-old man faced the death penalty under this law, accused of engaging in “unlawful sexual intercourse” with a mentally diminished man. This case underscores the harsh reality of the legal situation for the LGBTQ+ community in Uganda.
The recent arrests in Uganda highlight the country’s ongoing crackdown on the LGBTQ+ community, drawing attention to the need for continued international advocacy and support for human rights. The situation poses a significant challenge to the global community in addressing severe violations of LGBTQ+ rights and the principle of non-discrimination.