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Secretary of State Kerry: Enactment of Ugandan anti-homosexuality bill 'a tragic day for Uganda'

Statement from U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry:

February 24, 2014
 
STATEMENT BY SECRETARY KERRY
 
Enactment of Ugandan Anti-Homosexuality Bill
 

This is a tragic day for Uganda and for all who care about the cause of human rights. Ultimately, the only answer is repeal of this law.

The United States is deeply disappointed in the enactment of the Anti-Homosexuality Bill in Uganda. For the four years since the bill was introduced, we have been crystal clear that it blatantly violates human rights obligations that Uganda’s Human Rights Commission itself has recognized are enshrined in Uganda’s Constitution
 
Today’s signing threatens a dangerous slide backward in Uganda’s commitment to protecting the human rights of its people and a serious threat to the LGBT community in Uganda.
We are also deeply concerned about the law’s potential to set back public health efforts in Uganda, including those to address HIV/AIDS, which must be conducted in a non-discriminatory manner in order to be effective.
 
As President Obama stated, this legislation is not just morally wrong, it complicates a valued relationship.  Now that this law has been enacted, we are beginning an internal review of our relationship with the Government of Uganda to ensure that all dimensions of our engagement, including assistance programs, uphold our anti-discrimination policies and principles and reflect our values.
 
From Nigeria to Russia and Uganda, we are working globally to promote and protect the human rights of all persons.  The United States will continue to stand against any efforts to marginalize, criminalize, and penalize vulnerable persons in any society.

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