Tuesday, 11 January 2011

Amnesty International: Uganda rights groups hail landmark LGBT ruling

Amnesty International Press release
4 January 2011

Ugandan human rights groups have welcomed a court ruling banning media from publishing the names of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) people following a tabloid campaign targeting alleged homosexuals.

A High Court judge ruled on Monday against the Rolling Stone tabloid newspaper, which last year published a series of lists and photos of people it said were gay, some of whom were attacked after their names had been published.

Judge Vincent Musoke-Kibuuke banned Rolling Stone from revealing the identities of LGBT people and extended the ruling to all Ugandan media.

"The human rights community welcomes this ruling as a landmark in the struggle for the protection of human dignity and the right to privacy irrespective of one's sexual orientation," said a statement by The Civil Society Coalition on Human Rights and Constitutional Law in Uganda.

Rolling Stone, a weekly tabloid paper launched last year by university graduates, published what it labelled "100 Pictures Of Uganda's Top Homos" on 2 October 2010. Another article had the headline "hang them" above a list of names and photos.

Rights groups warned that the articles put the lives of LGBT people in danger. At least four people named in the article said they were attacked, including one woman who was reportedly forced to leave her home after neighbours pelted it with stones.

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