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Activists, NGOs React To Nigerian Law Criminalizing Same-Sex Marriage, Relationships

News outlets summarize the response of activists, experts, and non-governmental organizations to a new law in Nigeria outlawing same-sex marriage and relationships, as well as membership in gay rights groups.

Agence France-Presse: Same-sex ban ‘legalizes’ homophobic violence: gay Nigerians
“Gay activists on Tuesday vowed to fight the Nigerian government after the country outlawed same-sex unions, warning the act legitimized homophobic violence and increased fears of persecution…” (1/14).

Associated Press: Dozens arrested for being gay in north Nigeria
“First the police targeted the gay men, then tortured them into naming dozens of others who now are being hunted down, human rights activists said Tuesday, warning that such persecution will rise under a new Nigerian law…” (Faul, 1/14).

Thomson Reuters Foundation: New anti-gay law to slow Nigeria’s fight against HIV/AIDS — experts
“A new anti-gay law signed on Monday by Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan risks hindering progress in the fight against HIV/AIDS in Nigeria, UNAIDS and the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria said…” (Caspani, 1/14).

U.N. News Centre: U.N. human rights chief denounces ‘draconian’ anti-homosexuality law in Nigeria
“The United Nations human rights chief today voiced her alarm at a ‘draconian’ new law in Nigeria that further criminalizes lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people, organizations and activities, as well as people who support them…” (1/14).

UNAIDS: UNAIDS and the Global Fund express deep concern about the impact of a new law affecting the AIDS response and human rights of LGBT people in Nigeria
In a joint press release with the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, UNAIDS expressed “deep concern” about the law, saying, “…The new law could prevent access to essential HIV services for LGBT people who may be at high risk of HIV infection, undermining the success of the Presidential Comprehensive Response Plan for HIV/AIDS which was launched by President Goodluck Jonathan less than a year ago…” (1/14).

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