Secretary of State John Kerry Phoned Ugandan President to Discuss Anti-Gay Law’s Impact

Secretary of State John Kerry spoke with Ugandan President Museveni yesterday via phone, according to a State Department memo from spokesperson Jen Psaki:

KerrySecretary Kerry expressed the United States’ deep disappointment in the Ugandan Government’s decision to enact the Anti-Homosexuality Bill. The Secretary noted that the decision complicates the U.S. relationship with Uganda. He also raised U.S. concerns that this discriminatory law poses a threat to the safety and security of Uganda’s LGBT community, and urged President Museveni to ensure the safety and protection of all Ugandan citizens.  The two also discussed the law’s negative impact on public health efforts including those to address HIV/AIDS, as well as on tourism and foreign investment in Uganda. 

Comments

  1. tranquilo says

    In diplomacy, “complicate” is something a client state of a major power most definitely does not want to hear. Yes, it reads “soft”, but that’s a threat.

  2. JJ says

    I’m no diplomat, but I think “complicated” means that the U.S. has made public commitments to both humanitarian aid and human rights, including LGBT rights, which Uganda has now thrown into conflict. It puts the U.S. in a no-win situation. How can it continue aid and still hold Uganda accountable for its human rights offenses? How can the U.S. withhold aid and still fight the spread of HIV and other health crises in Uganda? How can anti-HIV aid be effective when Uganda has created a population that is beyond the reach of that aid because to seek testing and treatment is to invite imprisonment? What action can the U.S. take without incurring the ire of various political constituencies at home and internationally?

    Aid that should have been purely humanitarian and apolitical now has nasty political and public health ramifications.

  3. simon says

    Please! He has already used the stick. Now he is dangling a carrot. You guys should have read the news the World Bank has suspended aids to Uganda. If you care to google, the major shareholder of World Bank is the US.

  4. Mike says

    We’ve already seen what happens when an African country abandons rational, scientific appraisal of its problems – people die in great numbers.

    “The Aids policies of the former South African president Thabo Mbeki’s government were directly responsible for the avoidable deaths of more than a third of a million people in the country, according to research by Harvard university.” ( http://www.theguardian.com/world/2008/nov/26/aids-south-africa )

    Given that Uganda has its own sexuality “experts” with opinions differing from the rest of the world, I wonder what prodding will come from the African National Congress, as Uganda’s intransigence will have an effect on the entire continent.

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