Monday, March 1, 2010

Malawi Joins List of Growing Anti-Gay Sentiment in Africa

Over the past month we have been documenting the rampant homophobia in the African countries of Uganda and Kenya.

Now it seems we can add Malawi to the list of places that is not safe for members of the LGBT community. The Advocate is reporting that police in Malawi on Sunday said they had discovered “pornographic films” at the office of a rights group and that police officers were, as a result, hunting down a number of prominent citizens to charge them with “having carnal knowledge of any person against the order of nature” and indecent practices between males.

“We are targeting some prominent personalities and our suspects include legislators, priests, academics, and other professionals,” said police spokesman David Chingwalu, who would not identify the rights group that had been raided.

Homosexuality is illegal in Malawi, where the country’s one known gay group, the Centre for the Development of People, operates underground. CEDEP has been providing financial support to gay couple Tiwonge Chimbalanga and Steven Monjeza, who have been charged with “indecent practices” after getting married in the country’s first same-sex wedding in December. They couple could face up to 14 years in prison if convicted.

For more on this story, click here.

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