Botswana decriminalizes gay sex in latest LGBT rights victory in Africa

www.cbsnews.com | 6/11/2019 | Staff
SweetStuff33 (Posted by) Level 3
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Activists celebrate outside the High Court in Gaborone, Botswana, June 11, 2019. Botswana became the latest country to decriminalize gay sex when the High Court rejected as unconstitutional sections of the penal code that punish same-sex relations with up to seven years in prison.

Johannesburg -- Botswana became the latest country to decriminalize gay sex on Tuesday in a landmark case for Africa. The High Court of Botswana rejected as unconstitutional sections of the penal code punishing same-sex relations with up to seven years in prison.

Activists - Courtroom - Decision - Nation - Continent

Jubilant activists in the packed courtroom cheered the unanimous decision in the southern African nation that is seen as one of the continent's most stable and democratic. The ruling came less than a month after Kenya's High Court upheld similar sections of its own penal code in another closely watched case that left LGBT rights advocates disappointed.

More than two dozen countries in sub-Saharan Africa have laws criminalizing gay sex, often holdovers from colonial times. Earlier this year, the southern African nation of Angola decriminalized same-sex activity and banned discrimination based on sexual orientation.

International - **** - Gay - Bisexual - Trans

According to the International ****, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Intersex Association's 2019 roundup, consensual same-sex sex acts are still officially or unofficially criminalized in 70 U.N. member nations. The same report said the death penalty could still be implemented for consensual same-sex sexual acts in at least 10 nations around the world.

Those arguing against the laws say they leave people in the LGBT community vulnerable to discrimination and abuse while making it difficult to access basic health and other services.

Group - LEGABIBO - Petitioner - Case - Laws

The Botswana-based non-governmental group LEGABIBO, which supported the anonymous petitioner in the case, has said such laws "infringe on basic human dignity."

People in the courtroom were ecstatic, leaping up, clapping and ululating, LEGABIBO legal policy director Caine Youngman told The Associated Press. When the...
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