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Western Nations call on Guyana to consult on legalising same-sex relations

Last Updated on Monday, 17 May 2021, 9:03 by Denis Chabrol

Major  Western Nations are Monday- “International Day against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia” are calling on Guyana to begin discussions on legalising same-sex relations.

“We encourage Guyana’s civil society and political leaders to embark on a process of engagement and change in 2021 with the aim of decriminalizing intimate same sex relations,” the envoys in Guyana said in a statement.

The call was issued by the United States, Britain, Canada and the European Union was issued to mark the occasion whose theme is  “Together: Resisting, Supporting, Healing!”.

With most English-speaking former British colonies finding the decriminalisation of same-sex relations a major political and religious sticking point, the Western Nations acknowledged that there are stumbling blocks but urged the need to respect human rights.

“We understand and respect that countries are at different stages of acceptance and engagement on this issue.  Nevertheless, human rights of all persons are universal and indivisible, and these include the human rights of LGBTQI+ persons,” the diplomatic envoys said in a joint statement,

The Western Nations are encouraging Guyana’s civil society and political leaders to this year continue consultations with each other with the aim of decriminalizing intimate same sex relations. “We believe that May 17 is a day we can all come together and continue our dialogue and collaboration with all our partner states and civil society organizations to help bring an end to discrimination and violence against LGBTQI+ persons.

The top diplomats said called on thee stakeholders to “raise our voices and recommit our efforts to put human dignity at the heart of all that we do to build more just and more inclusive societies.”

The joint statement was issued by the Ambassador of the United States of America, Sarah-Ann Lynch;  the Acting British High Commissioner, Ross Denny; the Canadian High Commissioner, Mark Berman, and the Ambassador of the European Union, Fernando Ponz Canto

The Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) has struck down Guyana’s cross-dressing laws as unconstitutional, in a case brought by several male homosexuals who had believed that police had been unfairly targeting them because of their mode of dress.

A magistrate had even blocked a number of them from entering her courtroom clad in female attire.