Victor Madrigal, a UN expert, has called on all of the countries that currently criminalise homosexuality to decriminalise it by 2030. He made the call at the IGLA, which is currently being held in New Zealand.
“I don’t see why we shouldn’t ask to see a world free of criminalisation by 2030,” he said. He added: “Decriminalisation is not getting us from zero to one: it is getting us from minus one to zero.”
He also used his speech to hit out at countries who attempted to justify their laws, as well as ones who have them on the statute book despite claiming not to enforce them.
“There is no room to argue for legal justification of criminalization of same-sex relations,” he said. “Criminalisation creates an incentive for persecution.”
He then added how there was a need for countries to work together, saying: “Coalition is fundamental, not one state can do this alone.”
Alongside Madrigal’s speech, the IGLA released the 13th edition of its report on how laws around the world affect the LGBTQ community. They found that 70 countries criminalise homosexuality, with a further six punishing same-sex activity with death. The report also found the death penalty was possible in five other countries.
It also found that 26 countries have the maximum penalty for same-sex relations as between ten years and life imprisonment, and an additional 32 have laws banning freedom of expression. Read more via Gay Times