The White House on Thursday is expected
to announce additional measures against Uganda over its anti-gay law.
According to Reuters, the government
will “ratchet up punishment on those implementing the law.”
Uganda President Yoweri Museveni in
February signed the nation's Anti-Homosexuality Act, which makes gay
unions a crime punishable by life in prison.
A government spokesman remained defiant
when asked about the move.
“Uganda is a sovereign country and
can never bow to anybody or be blackmailed by anybody on a decision
it took in its interests, even if it involves threats to cut off all
financial assistance,” Ofwono
Opondo told Reuters.
Uganda has already lost roughly $118
million in aid from Western donors, including the United States, over
the law's enactment.
Last week, Massachusetts Senator Edward
J. Markey, a Democrat, introduced a bill which would make LGBT rights
a foreign policy priority for the United States.
Edward Markey proposes making gay rights a foreign policy priority.)
In an emailed statement, Markey
responded to the government's upcoming announcement.
“The LGBT community continues to be
targeted and persecuted with increasing regularity, with Uganda’s
Anti-Homosexuality Act among the most brutal and unacceptable of
these recent attacks,” Markey said. “I applaud the State
Department's efforts to protect the basic human rights of LGBT people
in Uganda. My legislation, the International Human Rights Defense
Act, will ensure that responding to discrimination and violence
against the LGBT community remains a foreign policy priority for our
nation and will create a position at the State Department to
coordinate this important effort. The international community should
know that the United States is committed to protecting the human
rights of the LGBT community everywhere.”
Markey's bill has 24 co-sponsors.