Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni defends anti-gay law

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Esha Saxena Mandala
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Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni defends anti-gay law ,he has rebuffed international calls to repeal the country’s recent anti-LGBTQ legislation, insisting that no amount of intimidation will persuade his government to do so.

The signing is finished, nobody will move us… I said you people should be ready for a war. And you cannot fight a war when you are a pleasure seeker, if you like a soft life,” Museveni said in a statement after a meeting with members of his National Resistance Movement (NRM) party on Wednesday.

Kampala has attracted widespread criticism and received threats of sanctions from Western nations and human rights organizations following the president’s signing of what activists call one of the most severe anti-LGBTQ laws in the world.

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said on Monday that Washington would consider imposing visa restrictions on Ugandan officials and others for human rights violations. It came after President Joe Biden called the law a “tragic violation of universal human rights” and called for its repeal, adding that the US would assess the law’s impact on all aspects of its engagement with Kampala.

However, President Museveni has insisted that the anti-homosexuality law is necessary to protect the human race by preventing members of the LGBTQ community, whom he describes as “disoriented,” from “recruiting” others.

The problem is that, yes, you are disoriented. Now, don’t try to recruit others. If you try to recruit people into a disorientation, then we go for you. We punish you. That’s number one,” he said.

Museveni said LGBTQ people who “violently grab some children” and rape them will be killed.

He further urged lawmakers and all Ugandans to remain firm and fight for his cause. “If you are fighting for the right cause, there’s no force which can defeat you,” he added.

The Anti-Homosexuality Act of 2023 mandates life imprisonment for anyone found guilty of engaging in same-sex sexual activities. It also provides for the death penalty for “aggravated cases,” which include instances such as statutory rape involving a minor or cases where one person involved is infected with a chronic illness like HIV. Additionally, the act imposes a 20-year prison term for those convicted of “promoting” homosexuality.

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