On Oct 26, 2012 Gaystarnews reported UK’s Lib-Dem, Tory and Labour Lords and Baronesses stand up for gay rights in short, late afternoon debate
The House of Lords has called for a stronger government stance against the mistreatment of gay men and women in the developing world.
Members of the British parliament’s upper house united in a debate led by Conservative peer Lord Lexden yesterday (25 October).
Speaking to a mostly empty chamber he stated that the Organisation for Refuge Asylum and Migration has this year estimated that more than 175 million people, nearly three times the population of the United Kingdom, live in circumstances where they are at risk of persecution because of their sexual orientation or gender identity.
He went on to list the shocking abuses the global LGBT community still suffers, claiming in at least 76 countries, consensual, adult, same-sex relations are criminal offences for either men or women, or in some cases both.
‘Punishment can be death in seven countries, including Iran, Sudan, and parts of Nigeria and Somalia,’ Lord Lexden said.
‘In six others, including Malawi and Malaysia, same-sex relations are punishable by hard labour or by corporal punishment.
‘Long terms of imprisonment, often far in excess of 10 years, can be imposed on homosexuals in 38 countries, including Jamaica, Barbados, Kenya, Gambia, Tanzania, Libya, Pakistan and Bangladesh.’
He stressed that even in countries where the anti-gay laws were ‘not enforced rigorously’ they were ‘grossly discriminatory’ and created ‘a climate of grave anxiety and fear for homosexuals’.
After giving case studies on the murders of a gay Ugandan man’s entire family and several other incidents of horrific violence against the LGBT community in the developing world, he said that such crimes against humanity were ‘inevitable consequence of laws which criminalize homosexuality’. Continued