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“The UK stands ready to support any Commonwealth nation wanting to reform outdated legislation that makes such discrimination possible.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.

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 7 Comments

‘Buy-sexual’ and ‘cashsexual’ are the new labels for straight men who have sex with men for money

Gay-for-pay is so passé. These days, it’s all about buy-sexuality and/or cashsexuals. Evidently, those are the new labels for straight-identifying menfolk who have sex with other menfolk for money. “We

The Happenings 0 Comments

India’s top court decriminalizes gay sex, overturning more than 150 years of anti-LGBT legislation

India’s Supreme Court has struck down a colonial-era law criminalizing consensual gay sex, overturning more than 150 years of anti-LGBT legislation. Section 377, an archaic law imposed during British rule

The Happenings 16 Comments

LGBT Leaders From Some Homophobic Nations Write Letter To President Obama

Gay rights leaders in some of the most antigay countries around the world have joined in writing a letter to President Obama asking him to be more consistent in how

3 Comments

Leave a Reply

Click here to cancel reply.