The President of The Gambia has renewed his harsh attacks on gays. Responding to recent calls for African nations to respect gay rights, Gambian President Yahya Jammeh reiterated that he would never accept gays in his West African nation, reports the South African Press Association.
"We know what human rights are. Human beings of the same sex cannot marry or date," Jammeh said while swearing in 15 ministers of his new government. "If you think it is human rights to destroy our culture, you are making a great mistake because if you are in the Gambia, you are in the wrong place then."
In [Gambia] homosexuality is punishable by up to 14 years imprisonment, for men and women. Jammeh has threatened to introduce even stricter laws.
Jammeh has ruled The Gambia after seizing power in a military coup in 1994. In recent years the West African dictator has attracted international attention for his anti-gay rhetoric and violent threats. In May and June 2008, the Gambian leader ordered all homosexuals to leave the country and promised to "cut off the head"of any gay man remained in the West African nation.
Jammeh has also threatened to fire all gay and lesbian officers serving in the military.
Same-sex acts are currently illegal in at least 38 of 54 African countries. Four nations—Mauritania, Nigeria, Somalia and Sudan—boast the death penalty for gays or same-sex activity. South Africa and Seychelles are the only African nations that protect LGBT rights. South Africa is also the only African nation to guarantee marriage equality.
Some Background ...
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UN Chief Urges African Leaders to Respect Gay Rights