Speaking during a tour stop last week in the North Bank region of the country, the Gambia president Yahya Jammeh threatened to slit the throats of gay men
"If you do it [in The Gambia] I will slit your throat — if you are a man and want to marry another man in this country and we catch you, no one will ever set eyes on you again, and no white person can do anything about it.”
According to Fatu Camara, a journalist and former press secretary to Jammeh, the reference to white people is likely a nod to Western leaders who have criticized the country’s human rights abuses and reduced aid.
Camara, who fled The Gambia in 2013 to escape sedition charges, said that Jammeh has spun the aid cuts as an affront to the country's religious values that is directly related to its anti-homosexuality laws.
Foreign Minister Neneh MacDouall-Gaye said at a European Union (EU) meeting this last weekend that the country's government would observe international laws, but would continue to protect religious beliefs and traditions.
"If you read in between the lines, the foreign minister is also trying to say, 'We are not going to accept homosexuality.’ The president already made the Gambians believe that the reason the EU cut funding to him is because of homosexuality."
Last December, it was reported that at least three people were arrested on suspicion of homosexuality. Earlier last year, the Gambia criminalized "aggravated homosexuality" with punishment up to life in prison.
Watch Jammeh rail against the "gay agenda", AFTER THE JUMP…