Kenya’s Bid for LGBT Equality Hits a Wall
Judges declined to overturn colonial-era laws criminalizing same-sex relationships. Human Rights Watch’s Neela Ghoshal says it’s a setback with regional repercussions.
A three-year legal challenge from Kenya’s LGBT community that aimed to overturn sections of the country’s legal code that criminalize LGBT relationships has faltered. In Nairobi, a panel of judges determined on May 24 that the court would uphold the laws, which stem from a generic colonial-era legal template found across many Commonwealth countries that banned “carnal knowledge against nature.” Although prosecutions under the law are rare, they underwrite violence and discrimination, and they have been a key target for the country’s LGBT activists for years.
Jefcoate O'Donnell was an editorial fellow at Foreign Policy in 2019. Twitter: @brjodonnell
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