On 24 February Uganda president signed into law the Anti-Homosexuality that has been on the political agenda in the country since 2009 and that not only heightened the punishment for homosexual sex but also outlawed all forms "promotion of homosexuality". Reports paint a picture of a radically worsened situation for LGBTIQ people and activists in the country in the aftermath of the new law: Media outings of gay and lesbians, increased mob violence, killings, and deep fear and sadness as people are loosing jobs, housing, and being alienated by friends and family. Opponents of the law - including a number of public figures - have now taken their case to the Constitutional Court.

This is not just about Uganda. Homophobic legislation is on the increase across the African continent - and beyond. What are the driving forces of this development? What is the role of international actors? And what can the courts do? This is the topic of a new CMI-UiB research project and two of the researchers will share their reflections in this breakfast forum.

Malcolm Langford (Norwegian Centre for Human Rights and Chr. Michelsen Institute) directs the NCHR Socio-Economic Rights Programme, leads a number of consortiums and acts as an advisor to a range of UN bodies, governments and NGOs.

Siri Gloppen is Professor of Comparative Politics at the University of Bergen and Senor Researcher at the Chr. Michelsen Institute. She has worked extensively on the social and political role of courts, with a particular focus on African countries, including Uganda and leads the research project on "Sexual and Reproductive Rights Lawfare".


Coffee, juice and croissants will be served - all welcome!