A Kenyan court has said yes to carrying on the use of anal examinations in order to work out a ‘suspect’s’ sexual orientation, as same-sex relationships in the country are still considered a crime. The decision was made despite other members arguing that the procedure is the same as torture and degrading treatment.
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This came after two men had tried to put an end to enforced anal tests and HIV screenings after they endured the procedures themselves. They were both arrested back in February 2015 on suspicion of having homosexual sex. In their case against the use of testing, they said that the screenings they endured amounted to torture.
Mombasa high court judge Mathew Emukule ruled against the petition and said:
I find no violation of human dignity, right to privacy and right to freedom of the petitioners.
The two men therefore still face the charges and could be put in prison for up to 14 years if convicted. It’s completely mental to imagine living in a place where same sex relationships are not allowed, let alone being put in a jail cell for over a decade just for having sex. It’s madness and Eric Gitari, the executive director of the Kenyan National Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission, who supported the petition, agreed as he said:
I sat in court holding my chin in disbelief.
It’s so painful when we are trying to encourage the gay community to go to court to affirm their rights; the courts are instead affirming violation of their rights.
Do we want to use the nation’s scarce resources on this?
Amnesty International have also spoken out against the ruling, and said:
Forcible anal examinations of men suspected of same-sex relationships is abhorrent, and violates the prohibition of torture and other ill-treatment under international law. They should not be allowed to continue.
It is also absurd as the government has no business proving or disproving consensual homosexual activity. It’s a violation of the right to privacy.
Yeah pretty much shocking that this is happening in this day and age. When are people going to stop discriminating and hating on people for something that is totally natural and normal. Carrying out those tests are degrading, invasive and as Gitari said, a waste of the country’s resources.
Must be a hard time to be gay in Kenya right now. Same goes for Russia – to read what it’s like to be gay and living there right now, click HERE.