Yesterday the European Parliament adopted an urgency resolution condemning the “Anti Homosexuality Bill” under consideration in the Ugandan Parliament since September 2009.
The European Parliament repeated its opposition to a draft law calling for fines, imprisonment and the death penalty for Ugandan lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people in Uganda and abroad. The Bill prescribes capital punishment in some cases, including engaging in sexual intercourse more than once with a person of the same sex. It also requires all parents, teachers and doctors to denounce LGBT children, students and patients to authorities.
The European Parliament first condemned the Bill in a December 2009 urgency resolution.
Even though the Bill has not passed yet, the European Parliament noted a sharp increase in severe threats and violence against LGBT people in Uganda, including calls for violence and killings of people presumed to be homosexual.
The resolution further calls on other European Institutions to keep sending strong messages to the government and parliament in Kampala.
Michael Cashman MEP, Co-President of the Intergroup on LGBT Rights, declared: “This is the only right message to send: criminalising people’s sexual orientation or gender identity is morally untenable, and contradicts everything the Universal Declaration of Human Rights stands for. Ugandan authorities must absolutely stop the adoption of this Bill.”
Raül Romeva i Rueda MEP, Vice-President of the LGBT Intergroup, added: “The European Parliament is united against this draconian piece of legislation: left, right, centre, everyone agrees that LGBT people must not be criminalised. Homosexuality is as African as it is Asian, American, European and Oceanian: it is part of our humanity. I hope Ugandans will remember this.”
The European Parliament’s Subcommittee on Human Rights will organise a hearing on LGBT rights in the world in the first half of 2011.