Senegalese teen faces trial for being gay

Two weeks after two Senegalese men were charged for sexual acts “against nature” another 17 year-old is due to stand trial on the same basis on August 24, the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission (IGLHRC) reports.

Homosexuality is illegal in Senegal, Article 319, paragraph 3 of the Senegal Penal Code, in the edition of the law of n° 66-16 of 12 February 1966 banning homosexual conduct.

The longest sentence for homosexuality in Senegalese history was pronunced in January 2009, when nine men were sentenced to 8 years in prison for "indecent conduct and unnatural acts". They were all released after their convictions were overturned on appeal in April 2009. Following their release, Massamba Diop, the Imam of Pikine, told his congregants that: “the judge was too lenient, we should have killed them”.

“The arrests violate both international and African human rights law. Unpopularity is never a justification for abuse", says IGLHRC executive director Cary Alan Johnson.

As there is no legal protection against discrimination based on sexual orientation in Senegal, IGLHRC and the Inner Circle have called to action for ending the persecution against sexual minorities by repealing Article 319.

Join the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission (IGLHRC) and TAKE ACTION NOW here.


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