Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on
Friday honored gay rights activists in Uganda with the department's
2011 Human Rights Defender Award.
Clinton praised the coalition of groups
which organized to oppose a draft law in Uganda which called for a
death penalty against gay men and women under certain conditions,
calling them an “inspiration for the world.”
The secretary said she raised the issue
of discrimination based on sexual orientation with Ugandan President
Clinton made her remarks at a reception
in Kampala as she continued her 10-day trip across Africa.
“I've said before it is critical for
all Ugandans – the government and citizens alike – to speak out
against discrimination, harassment, and intimidation of anyone.
That's true no matter where they come from, what they believe, or
whom they love. And no one has been a stronger champion than all of
you. You've been organized, disciplined, and savvy. You have
marshaled the evidence and made the arguments using the rights
enshrined in Uganda's constitution and in international law. And by
doing so, you are a model for others and an inspiration to the
world,” she said.
Among those recognized were Adrian
Jjuuko, Geoffrey Ogwaro, Julius Kaggwa, Joanita Warry Nambirige,
Clare Byarugaba, Frank Mugisha, and Hassan Shire Sheikh, according to
a State Department press release.