Democracy Now: Funeral Held for Slain LGBT Rights Activist in Uganda

In Uganda, funeral services are being held today for a prominent LGBT rights activist beaten to death this week. David Kato was killed after an unknown assailant attacked him in his home. Kato was a leading opponent of Uganda’s Anti-Homosexuality Bill, which calls for the death penalty or life imprisonment for some homosexual acts. Last year, he sued the Ugandan weekly newspaper Rolling Stone after it listed him in an article on what it called Uganda’s “top” 100 gays and lesbians, alongside a yellow banner that read “Hang Them.” In the Ugandan capital of Kampala, Maria Burnet of Human Rights Watch said Kato was targeted for his activism.

Maria Burnet: “David Kato was an outspoken member of the LGBT and the human rights community of Uganda. He was a member of Sexual Minorities Uganda, an organization, which has been in the lead for fighting against the proposed anti-homosexuality bill. He had traveled internationally. He had condemned the proposed legislation. He had spoken at public events about the problem of anti-homosexual rhetoric in Uganda and his name and his photos have been publicized in the Rolling Stone magazine with a sub-heading that said; ‘Hang Them.’ So, he had certainly been exposed in Uganda. He has certainly been outspoken and we remain very concerned about what might have led to his death.”

Ugandan police say they are pursuing two suspects in Kato’s death.

~ by wheresthemic on January 28, 2011.

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