World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 


Annulment of Uganda’s anti-homosexuality law hailed by UN

Annulment of Uganda’s anti-homosexuality law hailed by UN officials

1 August 2014

United Nations officials have welcomed the decision of the Constitutional Court of Uganda to annul the country’s Anti-Homosexuality Act, hailing it as a victory for the rule of law and social justice.

The law, which drew condemnation from the UN when it was promulgated in February, called for a 14-year jail term for a first conviction, and imprisonment for life for ‘aggravated homosexuality’. Challenged by 10 petitioners, including civil society, parliamentarians and academics, the law was annulled by the Court over a lack of quorum when the bill was passed.
Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon paid tribute to all those who contributed to this “step forward,” particularly the human rights defenders in Uganda who spoke out, at times incurring great personal risk.

“The Secretary-General calls for further efforts to decriminalize same-sex relationships and address the stigma and discrimination that persist in Uganda against lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender persons,” said a statement issued by his spokesperson.

Also welcoming the decision to annul the law was the Joint UN Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS), which had warned that the legislation may obstruct effective responses to the virus.

“This is a great day for social justice,” UNAIDS Executive Director Michel Sidibé declared in a statement. “The rule of law has prevailed.”

UNAIDS noted that while homosexuality remains illegal in Uganda, annulling the law could have positive public health implications. Studies show that when gay men and other men who have sex with men face discrimination, including abuse, incarceration and prosecution, they are less likely to seek HIV testing, prevention and treatment services.

“[Ugandan] President Yoweri Museveni had personally indicated to me that he wants Uganda to accelerate its AIDS response to ensure all people have access to life-saving services,” said Mr. Sidibé.

UNAIDS urged all Governments around the world, to protect the human rights of lesbian, gay, bi-sexual and transgender people through repealing criminal laws against adult consensual same sex sexual conduct; implementing laws to protect people from violence and discrimination; promoting campaigns that address homophobia and transphobia; and ensuring access to health services, including HIV prevention, treatment, care and support services.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
World Headlines

 

'Very Concerned' After Court Ruling: UNHRC On Transfer Of 267 People From Australia To Nauru

Most of these people were reportedly brought to Australia from Nauru to receive medical treatment and are in a fragile physical and mental state. The group includes more than 12 women and at least one child who have allegedly suffered sexual assault or harassment while in Nauru. The group also includes 37 children born in Australia. More>>

ALSO:

Sanctions To Be Lifted: NZ Welcomes Implementation Of Iran Nuclear Deal

Duty Minister Nikki Kaye has welcomed the next stage in the historic nuclear deal between Iran, the Five Permanent (P5) members of the United Nations Security Council, and Germany... “New Zealand has now started the domestic process for removing the UN sanctions." More>>

ALSO:

Pre-Davos Reports: 62 People Own Same Wealth As Half The World

Runaway inequality has created a world where 62 people own as much wealth as the poorest half of the world’s population – a figure that has fallen from 388 just five years ago, according to an Oxfam report published today ahead of the annual gathering of the world’s financial and political elites in Davos.. More>>

ALSO:

Jakarta: UN Secretary-General On Attacks

The Secretary-General condemns the bombings and gun attacks in Jakarta today... there is absolutely no justification for such acts of terrorism. He hopes the perpetrators of today's attacks will be swiftly brought to justice. More>>

ALSO:

Werewolf: America, The Gated

How, in a global metropolis like New York, do you write about immigration as a problem to be solved? And yet immigration is a hot button issue among those fighting to break away from the unruly clump of starters in the race for Republican nominee. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
World
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news