Australian Equality Party condemns Uganda's anti-gay law
The Australian Equality Party (AEP) has condemned the anti-homosexuality Bill signed into law by President Museveni in Uganda earlier this week.
The new law, which makes homosexual acts punishable by a jail sentence and commits repeat offenders to a lifetime of imprisonment, has received strong condemnation around the globe for its breach of human rights.
The Bill also criminalises the promotion of homosexuality and seeks to punish anyone who actively supports LGBT people.
Jason Tuazon-McCheyne, Convenor of the AEP described this as a tragic day for LGBTI people in Uganda and called on the Australian Government to take a stance against these human rights abuses.
“The international community should not stand idly by while homosexual people in Uganda face persecution,” Tuazon-McCheyne said. “I call upon the Abbott Government to lead a decisive action that sends a clear message to the international community that Australia will not condone such treatment of GLBTIQ people.”
Tuazon-McCheyne and the AEP has called for the Australian Government to: suspend all diplomatic ties with Uganda; prioritise asylum requests from LGBTI people from Uganda; and strengthen travel advice warning homosexual people not travel to Uganda.
“Australia should be leading the world in its support of the international GLBTIQ community,” Tuazon-McCheyne said. “The silence of our leaders on this issue is shameful, which why we need an independent voice in our parliament for all same-sex attracted, gender diverse and intersex people.”
Yesterday, Deputy Opposition Leader Tanya Plibersek called on the Abbott government to condemn the new anti gay laws.
"The new laws deny the LGBTI people of Uganda some of the most basic human rights," Plibersek said. "We call on the Abbott Government to register Australia’s protest in the strongest terms."
Greens Leader Christine Milne has added her voice to the concerns for Uganda's LGBTI people saying the Prime Minister, Tony Abbott, had an obligation to offer asylum to those outed as homosexual by Uganda tabloid, the Red Pepper.
"Tony Abbott has a moral obligation to condemn these horrific laws and to work with the global community to guarantee the safety of all those named as LGBTI in the Ugandan tabloid Red Pepper,” Milne said.
“As well as facing life imprisonment, LGBTI people in Uganda now face a heightened and severe risk of homophobic violence. Prominent activist David Kato was killed after a previous list was published in 2011.
“New reports of violence against persons suspected of being gay means that condemnation of the laws and a global effort to secure the safety of the named 200 is extremely urgent."