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Angola decriminalizes gay sex

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Angola has decriminalized gay sex conduct and banned discrimination based on sexual orientation, becoming the first country to do so this year.

Angola decriminalizes gay sex lailasnews

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Human Rights Watch says the changes came on Wednesday when Angola’s parliament adopted the new first penal code since independence from Portugal in 1975.

This is the latest in reforms under the administration of President Joao Lourenco, a former defense minister who took office in 2017 after the long rule of Jose Eduardo dos Santos.

While there have been no known prosecutions under the law, provisions like this one curtail the rights and freedoms of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people, subjecting their intimate lives to unwarranted scrutiny.

Last year Angola gave legal status to Iris Angola, which was established in 2013 – a move that can now be seen as a forerunner for this latest step toward equality. The group called the decision an “historic moment” allowing the organization to defend the rights of sexual minorities in Angola.

Human Rights Watch notes says 69 countries still criminalize same-sex conduct.

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