Uganda Hub

LGBTQ Families Dealt Major Blow at the United Nations

The United Nations Human Rights Council’s “Protection of the Family” resolution passed Thursday has the potential to become the groundwork for LGBT discrimination under international law. Uganda, Egypt, and Russia are among the countries responsible for the creation of the resolution, many of whom have explicitly anti-LGBT track records. This comes only a few weeks after the U.N. unanimously elected Uganda’s Foreign Minister Sam Kutsea, an ardent opponent of LGBT rights, as president for its 69th session.

Flag_of_the_United_Nations.svgThough the resolution does not limit its definition of a singular family to those consisting of one man and one woman, attempts at re-wording the language to be more inclusive have been blocked despite being supported by France, Ireland, and Chile. In not clearly articulating a recognition of different kinds of families, “Protection of the Family” carries the potential of being used to ignore families headed by same-sex couples, single parents, extended family members, or non-biological legal guardians.

The resolution is being held up as proof that there is global opposition to what is often perceived as a bullishly pro-LGBT rights agenda being led by the bulk of Europe and the United States.

“The defeat of various forms of the family demonstrates that the UN is weary of these kinds of debates,” Said Austin Ruse of the Catholic Family and Human Rights Institute. “Most of the member states would like to move on to issues that concern the whole world and not just elites in the [global] North.”

“It is a travesty for the UN to ignore reality,” said Julie de Rivero, director of advocacy for Human Rights Watch with the Human Rights Council. “Insinuating that different type of families don’t exist can do nothing but harm the children and adults around the world who live in those families.”

Read the resolution below:

Resolution on Protection of the Family by jlfeder

Michael Stipe's Passionate Speech On Uganda: VIDEO

Tonight at 9 PM ET, Logo will air a special titled "Trailblazers" to commemorate the one-year anniversary of DOMA's defeat. Included in the special is a brief word from R.E.M.'s Michael Stipe, who eloquently links the past struggles of LGBT Americans with the struggles of today's queer people around the globe:

IStipen the early ’80s, as a 22-year-old queer man living during the Reagan/Bush administration, I was afraid of getting tested for HIV for fear of quarantine, the threat of internment camps and having my basic civil rights stripped away...I waited five years to get my first anonymous test. I am happy that attitudes have matured and changed, and I feel lucky that i live in a country where acceptance, tolerance and policy toward HIV/AIDS and LGBTQ issues have advanced as far as they have.

Stipe goes on to introduce Ugandan gay rights activist John “Longjones” Abdallah Wambere, who fights against the powers that be in his country, where homosexuality is illegal and anti-gay violence continues to rise. As Wambere puts it, speaking to the audience at the "Trailblazers" event, in Uganda "[this event] would be illegal. We would be all arrested or closed."

Check out Stipe and Wambere's speeches, embedded AFTER THE JUMP...

[h/t MTV News]

Continue reading "Michael Stipe's Passionate Speech On Uganda: VIDEO" »

Ugandan Gay Rights Activists Lose Case To Ethics And Integrity Minister Who Stormed Meeting

SimonLokodoIn 2012, several gay rights activists were holding a workshop when Ethics and Integrity Minister Simon Lokodo (right), accompanied by police officers, broke it up. The activists filed suit against Lokodo and now, two years later, they've lost. It is an unsurprising but upsetting reminder of just how little the LGBT community of Uganda has left to hold on to since the passage of heinous anti-gay laws late last year.

ENCA reports:

"We lost on all grounds," gay activist Jacqueline Kasha, one of the team who had brought the case against the minister, told AFP.

Lokodo raided the workshop in February 2012 in the Ugandan town of Entebbe flanked by police, saying he had broken up the meeting as the "conscience of this country."

At the time, Amnesty International condemned the raid as "an outrageous attempt to prevent lawful and peaceful activities of human rights defenders in Uganda."

Our condolences and well wishes to the activists.

Uganda Warns U.S. Sanctions Over Anti-gay Law Will Harm ‘Most Vulnerable’ in the Country

MuseveniThe Ugandan government is pushing back against last week’s series of U.S. sanctions on the east Africa nation over its Anti-Homosexuality Law – such as the freezing or redirecting of certain aid funding and restricting entry into the U.S. by specific Ugandan officials involved in “human rights abuses.”

AFP reports:

"Uganda considers this announcement by the US regrettable as some of the halted funding and programmes in Uganda are those that will affect the most vulnerable people that the US government purports to support and aims to protect," the foreign affairs ministry said in statement.

The Kampala-based Sexual Minorities Uganda (SMUG) stated in a report last month that “the full force of the State, particularly the legislative and executive branches of government, is being used to hunt down, expose, demean and suppress Uganda’s LGBTI people.”

Gary Bauer: Obama Has Created 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell' For Christians: VIDEO

GaryBauerRight Wing Watch reports that Gary Bauer (right), a former presidential candidate and Family Research Council president with ties to a variety of conservative interest groups spoke at the Road to Majority summit today about President Obama's "secular" political agenda.

He began by saying that the president is "obsessed with this [gay rights agenda]," and, apparently referencing the administration's sanctions against Uganda for human rights abuses, threatening to drop aid to "third-world countries...if they don't adopt his views."

He later raged on: "He's repealed 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell' for homosexuals and replaced it with 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell' for Christians!"

The resounding finish? "If Obama succeeds in turning us into a secular, humanist nation, ripping us out of our Judeo-Christian roots, then the country, the republic will be destroyed." 

Check out Bauer's dire warning, AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "Gary Bauer: Obama Has Created 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell' For Christians: VIDEO" »

Spokesman Says Uganda 'Won't Be Blackmailed' by U.S. Over Anti-Gay Law

Following yesterday's White House announcement of new U.S. sanctions, Ugandan government spokesman Ofwono Opondo has claimed that the country’s tougher new anti-gay laws will not be derailed by threats of cuts to aid.

OpondoSaid Opondo to Reuters:

"Uganda is a sovereign country and can never bow to anybody or be blackmailed by anybody on a decision it took in its interests, even if it involves threats to cut off all financial assistance."

The Ugandan Anti-Homosexuality Act, 2014, prohibits same-sex relations as well as their promotion or recognition. The act provides for a prison term of seven years for those successfully prosecuted. Some acts are punishable with life in prison.

As punishment for President Yoweri Museveni’s decision to sign the law, Ugandan government institutions will lose U.S. funding, a planned military exercise with Uganda will be cancelled and Ugandan citizens involved in human rights abuses will be banned from entering the United States.

However, Opondo has claimed that Uganda has not been notified regarding any sanctions.


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