Members of the Ugandan gay community mourn at the funeral of murdered activist David Kato near Mataba, on January 28, 2011. The United States urged the Uganda government on Friday to “stop enactment” of the Anti-Homosexuality Bill approved by the country's parliament.
The United States urged the Uganda government on Friday to “stop enactment” of the Anti-Homosexuality Bill approved by the country's parliament.
“We condemn legislation that criminalises consensual sexual conduct between adults or criminalises simply being of a particular sexual orientation or gender identity,” a State Department spokesman told the Drive Hot Blog.
The comment echoes President Obama's characterisation of the bill in 2010 as “odious.”
The response by the State Department on Friday said the US “respects the sovereignty of Uganda and the prerogatives of its parliament to pass legislation.”
“Nevertheless,” the spokesman added, “we oppose any legislation that undermines a person’s enjoyment of his or her human rights.”
The statement notes that “a number of Ugandan government institutions have already spoken out against further criminalisation of homosexuality.”
The US cites the position of the Uganda Human Rights Commission, which said in 2010 that the Anti-Homosexuality Bill violated both Uganda's constitution and Uganda’s obligations under international law.
“Uganda’s judiciary has repeatedly supported the human rights of all Ugandan citizens, regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity,” the State Department added.
The opposition to the bill expressed by the US on Friday is consistent with the Obama's administration outspoken advocacy on a worldwide basis of the right of lesbians, gays and bisexual and transgender persons.