Efforts to evacuate rights defenders and most at risk LGBT Activists from Uganda intensify.

Press release from 05/30/2023

Berlin. May 30, 2023. Yesterday, Uganda’s President Yoweri Museveni massively intensified the criminalization of queer people in Uganda. The draft law was passed by Parliament in March and then revised again. In the future, so-called severe homosexuality can be punished with the death penalty. The new law also includes an article prohibiting “soliciting homosexuality”. Lesbians, gays, bisexuals and trans* people in particular can be severely punished. Philipp Braun from the Federal Board of the Lesbian and Gay Association (LSVD)

The federal government must not leave the queer communities in Uganda alone and simply accept the tightening of the law. It is correct that the federal government first wants to hear voices from civil society in Uganda and does not act hastily and thus endanger LGBTIQ* locally. Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock should now immediately issue a travel warning for Uganda. In addition, it should be examined whether diplomats can be expelled and the support of the Ugandan state and Ugandan organizations that have promoted the law can be transferred to other civil society actors in Uganda. In addition, an entry ban into the Schengen area should also extend to members of parliament who have explicitly introduced the so-called anti-homosexuality law.

Lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans* and intersex human rights activists (LSBTIQ*) from Uganda must be given the opportunity to leave the country and receive protection in Germany through humanitarian visas. Germany has a duty to send a strong signal against the Ugandan anti-LGBTIQ* law. In 2021, the Federal Government committed itself to working for LGBTIQ* rights worldwide in the “LGBTI Inclusion Concept of the Federal Government for Foreign Policy and Development Cooperation” and only recently presented guidelines for feminist foreign and development policy.

In addition, Germany currently co-chairs the multilateral LGBTIQ* human rights platform Equal Rights Coalition. Not to take action now against the Ugandan anti-LSBTIQ* law would be an indictment of German foreign policy.

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