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Monday, November 24, 2014

U.S. DISMAYED BY LAW THAT RESTRICTS RIGHTS OF LGBT INDIVIDUALS IN GAMBIA

FROM:  U.S. STATE DEPARTMENT 
U.S. Concerned by Passage of Discriminatory Law, Arrests of LGBT Individuals
Press Statement
Jeff Rathke
Director, Bureau of Public Affairs, Office of Press Relations
Washington, DC
November 24, 2014

We are dismayed by President Jammeh’s decision to sign into law legislation that further restricts the rights of LGBT individuals and are deeply concerned about the reported arrests and detention of suspected LGBT individuals in The Gambia. These reports follow the signature into law of a bill that imposes harsh sentences for the crime of “aggravated homosexuality.” The United States strongly opposes any legislation that criminalizes consensual relations between adults. We urge the Government of The Gambia not to arrest or detain individuals solely on the basis of their perceived sexual orientation or gender identity, and to protect the human rights and fundamental freedoms of all its citizens to which they are entitled under The Gambia’s international human rights commitments. We call on the Government of The Gambia to reverse the deteriorating respect for democracy and human rights.