Sexual orientation
1 min

PMO copies US embassy’s statement on Uganda’s anti-gay bill

A statement issued by the PMO on Uganda’s proposed anti-gay bill is nearly identical to a statement previously released by a US embassy official, notes the Globe’s Jane Taber.

Canada’s statement, issued by PMO spokesperson Dimitri Soudas:

"If adopted, a bill further criminalizing homosexuality would
constitute a significant step backwards for the protection of human
rights in Uganda. Canada has clearly spoken out
against human-rights violations committed against persons on the basis
of their sexual orientation and we urge states to take all necessary
measures to ensure that sexual orientation and gender identity may
under no circumstances be the basis for criminal penalties, in
particular executions, arrests, or detention.”

The US embassy’s statement, issued weeks ago by US embassy public affairs officer Joann
Lockard:

"If adopted, a bill further criminalizing homosexuality
would constitute a significant step backwards for the protection of
human rights in Uganda. We urge states to take all necessary measures
to ensure that sexual orientation or gender identity may under no
circumstances be the basis for criminal penalties, in particular
executions, arrests, or detention.”

Read more on Janet Taber’s blog post 

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Uganda’s proposed anti-gay bill is a draconian attempt to wipe out gays from Ugandan society. It would impose a death penalty for anyone convicted of “aggravated homosexuality,” and it would criminalize anyone who fails to report gays and lesbians to the police.

It’s a bit concerning that the PMO — stacked full of gay rights opponents — couldn’t find its own words to oppose such a blatantly awful law.

Still, the real test comes later this week. Harper is attending a Commonwealth summit of 53 countries, an event that is being chaired by Uganda’s president. Will Harper step up to the plate and lead the growing condemnation of Uganda’s anti-gay bill

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