Theresa May apologizes for UK’s colonial anti-gay laws

Theresa May apologizes for UK’s colonial anti-gay laws

British Prime Minister Theresa May has said she deeply regrets the UK’s role in criminalizing same-sex relations in its former colonies.

The laws were passed under British rule and are still used in 37 of the Commonwealth’s 53 member nations.

There is a global trend towards decriminalizing homosexual acts, but some countries, like Nigeria and Uganda, have imposed stricter laws.

At a Commonwealth meeting, Mrs. May said laws were “wrong then and wrong now”.

Same-sex relations are explicitly banned in 72 countries, according to the International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Intersex Association (ILGA).

“Nobody should face discrimination and persecution because of who they are or who they love,” Mrs. May said in London as Commonwealth leaders gather for their summit, which is held every two years.

“The UK stands ready to support any Commonwealth nation wanting to reform outdated legislation that makes such discrimination possible. Across the world, discriminatory laws made many years ago continue to affect the lives of many people, criminalizing same-sex relations and failing to protect women and girls.”

The number of states that criminalise same-sex relations is decreasing annually, with Belize and the Seychelles repealing such laws in 2016.

But in many socially conservative and religious countries in Africa, where homosexuality is a taboo, there has been resistance to calls to decriminalize same-sex relationships.

South Africa, which rejoined the Commonwealth after the end of white-minority rule in 1994, is one of the exceptions. It has one of the most liberal constitutions in the world, which protects gay rights, and was the first African country to legalise same-sex marriage in 2006.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
Previous A Medley Of Opinions About Love And Relationship In The Nigerian Gay Community
Next #HowIResist Campaign 22

About author

You might also like

The Happenings 40 Comments

Married Father Comes Out As Gay In A Video

In this inspiring video, 25-year-old Ben Hobson shares the story about his journey to living as his authentic realized self as a gay man — and a married father. Hobson

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
The Happenings 20 Comments

Creators of a sexual version of Da Vinci’s The Last Supper come under fire

A gay bar in Italy has caused controversy for its alternative version of Leonardo da Vinci’s Last Supper. Hosted by LGBTI group DiverCity, Caffe Verdi’s Easter Thursday gay night is

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
The Happenings 15 Comments

Mx and ‘manspreading’ added to Oxford Dictionary

The words are among the latest list to enter into the revered publication. The free online dictionary – created by the publishers of the esteemed Oxford English Dictionary – added

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

3 Comments

Leave a Reply