In response to President Joe Biden’s speech in reaction to the new anti-homosexuality law in Uganda, President Yoweri Museveni has said “no one will make us move.”
Museveni was responding to threats of sanctions from some Western countries since he signed into law the “Anti-Homosexuality Law 2023”, considered to be one of the most repressive in the world.
US President Joe Biden criticised the law as a “tragic violation of universal human rights” and called for its repeal, adding that the US was considering sanctions.
‘’The signing of the bill is over, nobody will make us move”, declared Mr Museveni at a meeting of members of the ruling party.
“President Museveni urged Ugandans to stand firm, stressing that the issue of homosexuality is a serious matter that concerns the human race. He congratulated the legislators for their support, adding that once they fight for the right cause, no one can defeat them”.
The new law provides for heavy penalties for people who have homosexual relations and “promote” homosexuality. The crime of “aggravated homosexuality” is punishable by death, a penalty that has not been applied for years in Uganda.
Denouncing a “tragic attack” on human rights, US President Joe Biden said he had asked his administration to study the consequences of this “shameful” law on “all aspects of cooperation between the United States and Uganda”.
The American authorities are considering “additional measures”, such as sanctions or restrictions on entry to their territory for “anyone associated with human rights violations or corruption”, he added.
The head of European diplomacy, Josep Borrell, also condemned a law that was “contrary to human rights”.
“The Ugandan government has an obligation to protect all its citizens and ensure that their fundamental rights are respected. If it fails to do so, relations with international partners will be compromised”, he warned.
In 2014, international donors had already reduced their aid following the passing of a law punishing homosexuality.
In particular, Washington suspended funding for government programmes and imposed visa bans. European countries such as Denmark, Sweden, Norway and the Netherlands had also frozen part of their bilateral aid.
Widespread protest by students from 13 universities took place in front of the Ugandan parliament on Monday against the US threat over the new anti-homosexuality law in solidarity with the government.