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Zambia VP: Decriminalization Of Homosexuality 'An Unreasonable Expectation'

Guy scott

Zambia Vice President Dr. Guy Scott has said that it is “not right” for the UK to expect his country to decriminalize homosexuality, reports STV.

Speaking at the Glasgow 2015 Commonwealth Games, Scott, who was born in Zambia to Scottish parents, said:

“Scotland introduced gay marriage last week so therefore Zambia must suddenly - you weren’t complaining about it two weeks ago – it’s not right. It’s an unreasonable expectation.”

Scott went on to say that Zambia is more interested in eradicating poverty and disease and improving the country’s education system.

Sexual relations between men in Zambia are punishable with up to 14 years in prison

Last September, Zambian activist Paul Kasonkomonawho was arrested after speaking out against the criminalization of homosexuality, was been ordered to face trial under the nation's penal code.

New research revealed last week shows that of the 80 countries worldwide that still criminalize homosexuality, more than half belong to the Commonwealth and that 42 of 53 Commonwealth countries continue to criminalise homosexuality, posing a serious threat to the LGBTI community.  


Zambian Gay Couple Acquitted Of Sodomy Charges

6a00d8341c730253ef019aff64f0f3970d-300wiThe Zambian gay couple charged with sodomy last May have been acquitted. The decision comes after pressure from Amnesty International on the country to release the men — as well as a November 2013 speech on the importance of gay rights from Zambian First Lady Dr. Christine Kaseba-Sata.

The reason for the men's acquittal, however, is decidedly less indicative of political change in Zambia.

Zambian Magistrate John Mbuzi acquitted the men on grounds that the state failed to prove the case beyond reasonable doubt, deeming the prosecution's evidence against the two men hearsay. The two men — Phillip Mubiana, a bricklayer, and James Mwape, a hairdresser — both 22 years old — could have each faced a prison sentence of up to 15 years if they had been found guilty of the charges.

(h/t AllAfrica)


Zambia's First Lady Speaks Out For LGBT Rights

Zambia

Though Zambia has hardly been known as a bastion of tolerance and inclusivity when it comes to LGBT rights, it appears there is now a chance that the government's attitudes toward homosexuality may change. AllAfrica reports that earlier this week, Zambian First Lady Dr. Christine Kaseba-Sata Back, a World Health Organization (WHO) Goodwill Ambassador against Gender-based Violence, an advocate for family planning and a specialist in obstetrics and gynaecology, spoke in favor of protections for LGBT Zambians:

Speaking at a UNAIDS hosted reception, she said that the "silence around issues of Men who have Sex with Men should be stopped and no one should be discriminated against on the basis of their sexual orientation. Rather, we should address reproductive health issues around this issue."

And if this were not enough - and in Zambia, it would have been earthshattering enough - she went even further to assure people working in the sexual and reproductive health sector of her and the president's support.

It is hard to overestimate the importance of what the First Lady said - in a country where the vast majority of people are opposed to gay rights. Indeed, where most people are totally opposed to even discussing the topic.

The First Lady's remarks come in stark contrast to the government's own history on LGBT rights. In 2009 the country's then-Vice President George Kunda called on Zambians to report those they suspected to be homosexuals to the police. Earlier this year, a gay couple (James Mwape, 20, and Philip Mubiana, 21) was arrested and imprisoned for "the offence of sodomy or having sex against the order of nature contrary to the laws of Zambia," after being reported on by a family member. 2013 also saw gay rights actvist Paul Kasonkomona arrested and ordered to face trial for advocating on TV for the decriminalization of homosexuality in Zambia. It is unclear at this time what impact the First Lady's remarks will have on the legal woes Mwape, Mubiana and Kasonkomona currently face.


Amnesty Calls on Zambia to Free Gay Couple Held for 4 Months as Court Orders Trial for Activist: VIDEO

Kasonkomona

Zambian activist Paul Kasonkomona, who was arrested back in April after speaking out iagainst the criminalization of homosexuality on Zambian TV, has been ordered to face trial under the nation's penal code.

From the Times of Zambia:

THE Lusaka High Court has ruled that trial should commence in the subordinate court in a matter in which gay rights activist Paul Kasonkomona is facing an offence of idle and disorderly conduct.

Kasonkomona, 38, is charged with one count of idle and disorderly conduct by soliciting for immoral purposes.

Particulars allege that Kasonkomona, of Chilulu Garden Township is on April 7, this year solicited for homosexual rights to be respected in Zambia during ‘The Assignment’ programme on Muvi Television.

Before commencement of trial, Kasonkomona had applied to have his case referred to the High Court for determination of Constitutional matters. He had contended that the constitutionality of Section 178 (g) of the Penal Code was vague and violated Article 18 and 20 of the Constitution. And Magistrate Lameck Ng’ambi in his ruling after the application stayed the proceedings and allowed the application of Article 18 and 20 in which the accused claimed that the section violated his fundamental rights.

But in her ruling yesterday, High Court Judge Anne Sharpe Phiri dismissed the application on grounds that there was no Constitutional issue raised concerning the contravention of fundamental rights.

Watch a news report on Kasonkomona's case from last May, AFTER THE JUMP...

2_zambiaIn related news, a gay couple arrested for sodomy back in April are still being held in jail. Amnesty Internation this week called on the country to release them, CNN reports:

James Mwansa and Philip Mubiana, both 22, will appear in court Monday for a judge to decide if they should be detained longer.

"It is high time that individuals stopped being persecuted because of their real or perceived sexual orientation or gender identity. Human rights are about the dignity and equality of all people," said Simeon Mawanza, Amnesty International's Zambia researcher.

The pair was arrested after a neighbor reported them to the police, according to Amnesty International. Authorities subjected them to anal examinations without their consent and forced them to confess, the human rights group said.

"Anal examinations conducted to 'prove' same-sex conduct are scientifically invalid, and if they were conducted without the men's consent, contravene the absolute prohibition of torture and other cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment or punishment under international law," said Simeon Mawanza, an Amnesty researcher in Zambia.

Amnesty's full statement here.

Continue reading "Amnesty Calls on Zambia to Free Gay Couple Held for 4 Months as Court Orders Trial for Activist: VIDEO" »


Gay Zambian Couple Arrested for Sodomy After Family Reports Them to Police

A gay couple in Zambia have reportedly been arrested after the family of one of the men reported them to authorities, AFP reports:

ZambiaJames Mwape, 20, and Philip Mubiana, 21, from the northern town of Kapiri Mposhi, are said to have been living together for some time.

"The two have been charged with the offence of sodomy or having sex against the order of nature contrary to the laws of Zambia," said central province police chief Standwell Lungu.

The two men will appear in court on Wednesday. Police allege that Mubiana played a female role in the relationship, and had at times attempted to dress like a woman, prompting his relatives to report the two to the police.

"The relatives are the ones that reported the matter to the police," Lungu told AFP.

Zambian officials have in recent years ordered people to turn known homosexuals over to the police.

More on this as it develops...


NEWS: George W. Bush To The Rescue, More Arrests In Russia, And A Long Goodbye To Gabriel Garcia Marquez

Brevegarciamarquez

Towleroad-roadicon Brother of Gabriel Garcia Marquez publicly acknowledges that the author is suffering from dementia, and no longer writes:

"He has problems with his memory. Sometimes I cry because I feel like I'm losing him," he said.

... invited to talk about his relationship with Gabo, as the writer is affectionately known in Colombia, Jaime said he could not hold back from talking about his illness anymore.

"He is doing well physically, but he has been suffering from dementia for a long time," he said. "He still has the humour, joy and enthusiasm that he has always had."

RussiaArrests Towleroad-roadicon Eight more gay activists arrested in St. Petersburg.

Towleroad-roadicon The New York Times on the fracturing of the "ex-gay" movement; and an interview with Exodus International's Alan Chambers:

Only a few years ago, Mr. Chambers was featured in advertisements along with his wife, Leslie, saying, “Change is possible.” But now, he said in the interview, “Exodus needs to move beyond that slogan.”

“I believe that any sexual expression outside of heterosexual, monogamous marriage is sinful according to the Bible,” Mr. Chambers emphasized. “But we’ve been asking people with same-sex attractions to overcome something in a way that we don’t ask of anyone else,” he said, noting that Christians with other sins, whether heterosexual lust, pornography, pride or gluttony, do not receive the same blanket condemnations.

Towleroad-roadicon London Pride.

Towleroad-roadicon CNN on the push to eliminate the United States' gay blood-donor ban:

... Since the 1980s, when the AIDS epidemic decimated their community, gay men -- or MSMs (men who have sex with men) as they are called by federal agencies -- have not been allowed to donate blood. In June, a group of 64 U.S. legislators led by Rep. Mike Quigley, D-Illinois, and Sen. John Kerry, D-Massachusetts, sent a letter to the Department of Health and Human Services encouraging it to move forward with a study that may lead to the end of the decades-old ban.

"This is a matter of life and death and we are turning away over 50,000 healthy men who want to donate blood," Quigley told CNN. "A straight person who has unsafe sex with multiple partners can give blood, and that creates a greater risk than a gay person in a monogamous relationship."

Towleroad-roadicon Obamafan serves the President eggs, bacon, toast, grits; dies happy.

Towleroad-roadicon Henceforth, 17 Magazine shall use only un-airbrushed, well-fed models.

Towleroad-roadicon The Guardian's Tom Shone goes gay for Magic Mike, and a lot of other movies, too:

The screen is an equal opportunity seducer – polymorphically perverse. If you are a man (or a woman) and you watch the famous scene in Notorious where Cary Grant nibbles Ingrid Bergman's ear while she is answering the phone, you don't feel two different things depending on which half of the screen you look at. I don't look at Bergman and go "yummy" and then look at Grant and go "shame about him."  Such is the heat of the movie screen that every grain and pixel is suffused with longing. The fact is: I have spent as much time in the dark of the movie theatre watching men kiss and be kissed, and getting a kick out of it, as I have women.

Towleroad-roadicon Amazon to enter the smartphone market.

Towleroad-roadicon George W. Bush spent the 4th in Zambia:

He worked alongside other volunteers in Kabwe - Zambia's second-largest city - to renovate a health clinic which specializes in the early detection and treatment of cervical cancer.

“You're always the former president but I wanted to come here as a laborer...I do want to say that on this particular trip that myself and friends have left behind a clinic and hope to inspire others to come and refurbish clinics as well,” Bush said.

Bush is helping lead the fight against cervical cancer in his post-presidential years and has so far helped raise more than $85 million ...

 


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