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Homosexuality is still punishable by death in five countries

Homosexuality is still punishable by death in five countries

India decriminalized homosexuality today, marking a major victory for gay rights activists worldwide. But there’s still a long way to go, according to international watchdog ILGA.

Being gay in India carried the risk of a lifelong prison term, reports the ILGA’s May 2009 world map of gay rights. At least five other countries — Mauritania, Sudan, Saudi Arabia, Yemen and Iran — substitute the death penalty in place of imprisonment. Only six countries afford gay couples marriage with full legal rights: South Africa, Spain, Belgium, Norway, Sweden and Canada.

Correction: The new measure approved by India applies only to the country’s capital, New Delhi.