Uganda Renews Clampdown on the LGBT Community


On November 11, police in Uganda arrested 125 members of the LGBT community. The Kampala police assert that the Ram Bar, which is frequented by the LGBT community, is a hot spot for smoking opium and shisha. Although reports suggest that only a few were smoking, those arrested were charged with violating the Tobacco Control Act, which outlaws smoking with a shisha water pipe, among other things. They face imprisonment for up to six months. Those arrested deny the charges, claiming that they were distributing condoms and anti-retroviral drugs to prevent the spread of HIV. The raid is the second of this month—part of a renewed crackdown on the LGBT community. In February 2014, Uganda’s president, Yoweri Museveni, signed into law the Anti-Homosexuality Act. Under the law, those convicted of “homosexual acts” faced seven years to life in prison.

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