LGBT rights by country or territory

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Worldwide laws regarding same-sex intercourse, unions and expression
Same-sex intercourse illegal. Penalties:
  Death
  Prison; death not enforced
  Death under militias
  Prison, w/ arrests or detention
  Prison, not enforced1
Same-sex intercourse legal. Recognition of unions:
  Extraterritorial marriage2
  Limited foreign
  Optional certification
  None
  Restrictions of expression
Rings indicate local or case-by-case application.
1No imprisonment in the past three years or moratorium on law.
2Marriage not available locally. Some jurisdictions may perform other types of partnerships.
LGBT rights at the United Nations
  
Neither States which did not support either declaration
  
Non-member states States that are not voting members of the United Nations
  
Oppose States which supported an opposing declaration in 2008 and continued their opposition in 2011
  
Subsequent member South Sudan, which was not a member of the United Nations in 2008
  
Support States which supported the LGBT rights declaration in the General Assembly or on the Human Rights Council in 2008 or 2011

Rights affecting lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) people vary greatly by country or jurisdiction—encompassing everything from the legal recognition of same-sex marriage to the death penalty for homosexuality.

Laws concerning gender identity-expression by country or territory
  Legal identity change, surgery not required
  Legal identity change, surgery required
  No legal identity change
  Unknown/Ambiguous

Notably, as of November 2022, 33 countries recognized same-sex marriage. By contrast, not counting non-state actors and extrajudicial killings, only two countries are believed to impose the death penalty on consensual same-sex sexual acts: Iran and Afghanistan.[1] The death penalty is officially law, but generally not practiced, in Mauritania, Saudi Arabia, Somalia (in the autonomous state of Jubaland) and the United Arab Emirates. As well as, LGBT people face extrajudicial killings in the Russian region of Chechnya. Sudan rescinded its unenforced death penalty for anal sex (hetero- or homosexual) in 2020. Fifteen countries have stoning on the books as a penalty for adultery, which would include gay sex, but this is enforced by the legal authorities in Iran and Nigeria (in the northern third of the country).[2][3][4][5]

In 2011, the United Nations Human Rights Council passed its first resolution recognizing LGBT rights, following which the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights issued a report documenting violations of the rights of LGBT people, including hate crimes, criminalization of homosexual activity, and discrimination. Following the issuance of the report, the United Nations urged all countries which had not yet done so to enact laws protecting basic LGBT rights.[6][7]

A 2022 study found that LGBT rights (as measured by ILGA-Europe's Rainbow Index) were correlated with less HIV/AIDS incidence among gay and bisexual men independently of risky sexual behavior.[8]

Scope of laws

Laws that affect LGBT people include, but are not limited to, the following:

History of LGBT-related laws

Ancient India

Ayoni or non-vaginal sex of all types are punishable in the Arthashastra. Homosexual acts are, however, treated as a smaller offence punishable by a fine, while unlawful heterosexual sex carries much harsher punishment. The Dharmsastras, especially the later ones, prescribe against non-vaginal sex like the Vashistha Dharmasutra. The Yājñavalkya Smṛti prescribes fines for such acts including those with other men. Manusmriti prescribes light punishments for such acts.[9][10] Vanita states that the verses about punishment for a sex between female and a maiden is due to its strong emphasis on a maiden's sexual purity.[11]

Ancient Israel

The ancient Law of Moses (the Torah) forbids men from lying with men (i.e., from having intercourse) in Leviticus 18 and gives a story of attempted homosexual rape in Genesis 19, in the story of Sodom and Gomorrah, after which the cities were soon destroyed with "brimstone and fire, from the Lord"[12][13] and the death penalty was prescribed to its inhabitants – and to Lot's wife, who was turned into a pillar of salt because she turned back to watch the cities' destruction.[14][15] In Deuteronomy 22:5, cross-dressing is condemned as "abominable".[16][17]

Assyria

In Assyrian society, sex crimes were punished identically whether they were homosexual or heterosexual.[18] An individual faced no punishment for penetrating someone of equal social class, a cult prostitute, or with someone whose gender roles were not considered solidly masculine.[18] Such sexual relations were even seen as good fortune, with an Akkadian tablet, the Šumma ālu, reading, "If a man copulates with his equal from the rear, he becomes the leader among his peers and brothers".[19][20] However, homosexual relationships with fellow soldiers, slaves, royal attendants, or those where a social better was submissive or penetrated, were treated as bad omens.[21][22]

Middle Assyrian Law Codes dating 1075 BC has a particularly harsh law for homosexuality in the military, which reads: "If a man have intercourse with his brother-in-arms, they shall turn him into a eunuch."[23][24][25] A similar law code reads, "If a seignior lay with his neighbor, when they have prosecuted him (and) convicted him, they shall lie with him (and) turn him into a eunuch". This law code condemns a situation that involves homosexual rape. Any Assyrian male could visit a prostitute or lie with another male, just as long as false rumors or forced sex were not involved with another male.[26]

Ancient Rome

In ancient Rome, the bodies of citizen youths were strictly off-limits, and the Lex Scantinia imposed penalties on those who committed a sex crime (stuprum) against a freeborn male minor.[27] Acceptable same-sex partners were males excluded from legal protections as citizens: slaves, male prostitutes, and the infames, entertainers or others who might be technically free but whose lifestyles set them outside the law.

A male citizen who willingly performed oral sex or received anal sex was disparaged, but there is only limited evidence of legal penalties against these men.[28] In courtroom and political rhetoric, charges of effeminacy and passive sexual behaviors were directed particularly at "democratic" politicians (populares) such as Julius Caesar and Mark Antony.[29]

Roman law addressed the rape of a male citizen as early as the 2nd century BC, when it was ruled that even a man who was "disreputable and questionable" had the same right as other citizens not to have his body subjected to forced sex.[30] A law probably dating to the dictatorship of Julius Caesar defined rape as forced sex against "boy, woman, or anyone"; the rapist was subject to execution, a rare penalty in Roman law.[31] A male classified as infamis, such as a prostitute or actor, could not as a matter of law be raped, nor could a slave, who was legally classified as property; the slave's owner, however, could prosecute the rapist for property damage.[32]

In the Roman army of the Republic, sex among fellow soldiers violated the decorum against intercourse with citizens and was subject to harsh penalties, including death,[33] as a violation of military discipline.[34] The Greek historian Polybius (2nd century BC) lists deserters, thieves, perjurers, and "those who in youth have abused their persons" as subject to the fustuarium, clubbing to death.[35] Ancient sources are most concerned with the effects of sexual harassment by officers, but the young soldier who brought an accusation against his superior needed to show that he had not willingly taken the passive role or prostituted himself.[36] Soldiers were free to have relations with their male slaves;[37] the use of a fellow citizen-soldier's body was prohibited, not homosexual behaviors per se.[38] By the late Republic and throughout the Imperial period, there is increasing evidence that men whose lifestyle marked them as "homosexual" in the modern sense served openly.[39]

Although Roman law did not recognize marriage between men, and in general Romans regarded marriage as a heterosexual union with the primary purpose of producing children, in the early Imperial period some male couples were celebrating traditional marriage rites. Juvenal remarks with disapproval that his friends often attended such ceremonies.[40] The emperor Nero had two marriages to men, once as the bride (with a freedman Pythagoras) and once as the groom. His consort Sporus appeared in public as Nero's wife wearing the regalia that was customary for the Roman empress.[41]

Apart from measures to protect the prerogatives of citizens, the prosecution of homosexuality as a general crime began in the 3rd century of the Christian era when male prostitution was banned by Philip the Arab. By the end of the 4th century, after the Roman Empire had come under Christian rule, passive homosexuality was punishable by burning.[42] "Death by sword" was the punishment for a "man coupling like a woman" under the Theodosian Code.[43] Under Justinian, all same-sex acts, passive or active, no matter who the partners, were declared contrary to nature and punishable by death.[44]

British Empire

The United Kingdom introduced anti-homosexuality laws throughout its colonies, particularly in the 19th century when the British Empire was at its peak.[45] As of 2018, more than half of the 71 countries that criminalised homosexuality were former British colonies or protectorates.[46]

Netherlands

In 2001, the Netherlands was the first country in the world to legalize gay marriage.[47]

Global LGBT rights maps

Laws regarding same-sex sexuality by country or territory
Worldwide laws regarding same-sex intercourse, unions and expression
Same-sex intercourse illegal. Penalties:
  Death
  Prison; death not enforced
  Death under militias
  Prison, w/ arrests or detention
  Prison, not enforced1
Same-sex intercourse legal. Recognition of unions:
  Extraterritorial marriage2
  Limited foreign
  Optional certification
  None
  Restrictions of expression
Rings indicate local or case-by-case application.
1No imprisonment in the past three years or moratorium on law.
2Marriage not available locally. Some jurisdictions may perform other types of partnerships.
LGBT rights at the United Nations
  Support
Countries which have signed a General Assembly declaration of LGBT rights or sponsored the Human Rights Council's 2011 resolution on LGBT rights (96 members)
  Oppose
Countries which signed a 2008 statement opposing LGBT rights (initially 57 members, now 54 members after withdrawal of Fiji, Rwanda and Sierra Leone)
  Neither
Countries which, as regards the UN, have expressed neither official support nor opposition to LGBT rights (44 members)
Homosexual "propaganda" and "morality" laws by country or territory
Homosexual "propaganda" and "morality" laws by country or territory
  Countries or territories that do not have homosexual "propaganda" or "morality" laws
  Fine[48]
  Unknown punishment
  Imprisonment
Decriminalization of same-sex sexual intercourse by country or territory
  1791–1850
  1850–1945
  1946–1989
  1990–present
  Unknown date of legalization of same-sex intercourse
  Same-sex sexual intercourse always legal
  Still criminalized
Equalization of age of consent laws for same-sex couples by country or territory
  1790–1829
  1830–1839
  1840–1859
  1860–1869
  1870–1879
  1880–1889
  1890–1929
  1930–1939
  1940–19491
  1950–1959
  1960–1969
  1970–1979
  1980–1989
  1990–1999
  2000–2009
  2010–2019
  2020–present
  Unknown date for equal age of consent laws for opposite and same-sex couples
  No consent laws/equal age of consent laws always equal for opposite and same-sex couples
  Unequal age of consent laws for same-sex couples
  Same-sex sexual intercourse illegal
1During World War II, Nazi Germany annexed or occupied territory, extending Germany's laws against same-sex sexual intercourse. Age of consent was previously equalized for same-sex couples in the following countries or territories before the war: Belluno (legal in 1890), Friuli-Venezia Giulia (legal in 1890), Poland (decriminalized in 1932), and Trentino-Alto Adige/Südtirol (legal in 1890).[citation needed] During World War II Germany did not consistently enforce anti-homosexual laws in all occupied countries.[49] All countries and territories listed that where annexed or established into reichskommissariats by Nazi Germany during World War II where restored as independent countries or reincorporated into their previous countries during or after the war and thus re-legalized equal age of consent laws for same-sex couples in those areas.[citation needed]
Legal status of same-sex marriage
  Marriage open to same-sex couples (rings: individual cases)
  Mixed jurisdiction: marriage recognized by the state but not by tribal government for residents who are members of the tribe
  Legislation or binding domestic court ruling establishing same-sex marriage, but marriage is not yet provided for
  Same-sex marriage recognized with full rights when performed in certain other jurisdictions
  Civil unions or domestic partnerships
  Limited legal recognition
  Local certification without legal force
  Limited recognition of marriage performed in certain other jurisdictions (residency rights for spouses)
  Country subject to an international court ruling that recognizes same-sex marriage
  Other countries where same-sex unions are not legally recognized
Legal status of adoption by same-sex couples by country or territory
  Joint adoption allowed
  Second-parent adoption allowed
  No laws allowing adoption by same-sex couples and no same-sex marriage
  Same-sex marriage but adoption by married same-sex couples not allowed
LGBT service in national militaries by country or territory[citation needed]
  All LGBT people can serve
  GBT men can serve
  LGB people can serve
  GB men can serve
  Ambiguous/unknown policy
  LGBT people are banned from serving
  No military
Employment discrimination laws by sexual orientation or gender identity by country or territory
  Sexual orientation and gender identity: all employment
  Sexual orientation with anti–employment discrimination ordinance and gender identity solely in public employment
  Sexual orientation: all employment
  Gender identity: all employment
  Sexual orientation and gender identity: federal public employment and federal contractors
  Sexual orientation and gender identity: public employment
  Sexual orientation: public employment
  No national-level employment laws covering sexual orientation or gender identity
Anti-discrimination laws covering goods and services by sexual orientation and/or gender identity by country or territory
Countries and territories with LGBT anti-discrimination laws in goods and services
  Sexual orientation and gender identity covered
  Sexual orientation covered
  Gender identity covered
  No national or local level anti-discrimination laws covering sexual orientation and/or gender identity in goods and services
Constitutional discrimination laws by sexual orientation and/or gender identity by country or territory
  Sexual orientation and gender identity covered
  Sexual orientation covered
  Gender identity covered
  No national or local level constitutional discrimination laws covering sexual orientation and/or gender identity
LGBT hate crime laws by country or territory
  Sexual orientation and gender identity hate crime laws
  Sexual orientation hate crime laws
  No LGBT hate crime laws
Incitement to hatred based on sexual orientation and gender identity prohibited by country or territory
  Incitement to hatred based on sexual orientation and gender identity prohibited
  Incitement to hatred based on sexual orientation prohibited
  No prohibition on incitement to hatred based on sexual orientation and gender identity
Ban on conversion therapy for minors on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity by country or territory
  Ban on conversion therapy on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity
  De facto ban on conversion therapy
  Case-by-case bans
  Proposed ban on conversion therapy
  No ban on conversion therapy
Immigration equality by country or territory[citation needed]
  Recognition of same-sex couples in national immigration laws
  Unknown/ambiguous
Bans on same-sex unions by country or territory
  No specific prohibition of same-sex marriages or unions
  Constitution bans same-sex marriage
  Constitution establishes Islamic law or bans violations of "Islamic morality"
Blood donation policies for men who have sex with men by country or territory
Blood donation policies for men who have sex with men
  Men who have sex with men may donate blood; No deferral
  Men who have sex with men may donate blood; Temporary deferral
  Men who have sex with men may not donate blood; Permanent deferral
  No Data
Blood donation policies for female sex partners of men who have sex with men by country or territory
Blood donation policies for female sex partners of men who have sex with men
  Female sex partners of men who have sex with men may donate blood; No deferral
  Female sex partners of men who have sex with men may donate blood; Temporary deferral
  Female sex partners of men who have sex with men may not donate blood; Permanent deferral
  No Data
Laws concerning gender identity-expression by country or territory
  Legal identity change, surgery not required
  Legal identity change, surgery required
  No legal identity change
  Unknown/Ambiguous
Legal recognition of non-binary genders and third gender
  Nonbinary / third gender available as voluntary opt-in
  Opt-in for intersex people only
  Standard for third gender
  Standard for intersex
  Nonbinary / third gender not legally recognized / no data

Timeline

Decriminalization of homosexuality timeline
Countries/Territories/States
Never been illegal
18th century
List
19th century
List
20th century
List
21st century
List
Notes
  • Note that while this template lists several historical countries, such as the Kingdom of France, Czechoslovakia, East Germany, etc., for the sake of clarity, the flags shown are contemporary flags.


LGBT-related laws by country or territory

Africa

List of countries or territories by LGBT rights in Africa
This table:

Northern Africa

LGBT rights in: Same-sex sexual activity Recognition of same-sex unions Same-sex marriage Adoption by same-sex couples LGB people allowed to serve openly in military Anti-discrimination laws concerning sexual orientation Laws concerning gender identity/expression
Algeria Algeria No Illegal since 1966
Penalty: Up to 3 years imprisonment with fines up to 10,000 dinars.[50] Torture,[51] beatings,[52] or vigilante executions are also common.
No No No No No No
Canary Islands Canary Islands
(Autonomous community of Spain)
Yes Legal since 1979
+ UN decl. sign.[53]
Yes De facto unions legal since 2003[54] Yes Legal since 2005[55] Yes Legal since 2005[56][57] Yes Spain responsible for defence Yes Bans all anti-gay discrimination[58] Yes Since 2007, all documents can be amended to the recognised gender[59]
Ceuta Ceuta
(Autonomous city of Spain)
Yes Legal since 1979
+ UN decl. sign.[53]
Yes De facto union since 1998[60] Yes Legal since 2005[55] Yes Legal since 2005[56] Yes Spain responsible for defence Yes Bans all anti-gay discrimination Yes Since 2007, all documents can be amended to the recognised gender[59]
Egypt Egypt No Male de jure legal, but de facto illegal since 2000
Penalty: Up to 17 years imprisonment with or without hard labour and with or without fines under broadly-written morality laws.[53][61]
No No No No No No
Libya Libya No Illegal since 1953 Penalty: Up to 5 years in jail or vigilante execution.[62][63] No No No No No No
Madeira Madeira
(Autonomous region of Portugal)
Yes Legal since 1983
+ UN decl. sign.[53]
Yes De facto union since 2001[64][65] Yes Legal since 2010[66] Yes Legal since 2016[67][68][69] Yes Portugal responsible for defence Yes Bans all anti-gay discrimination.[58] Yes Since 2011, all documents can be amended to the recognised gender[70]
Melilla Melilla
(Autonomous city of Spain)
Yes Legal since 1979
+ UN decl. sign.[53]
Yes De facto union since 2008[71] Yes Legal since 2005[55] Yes Legal since 2005[56] Yes Spain responsible for defence Yes Bans all anti-gay discrimination[72] Yes Since 2007, all documents can be amended to the recognised gender[59]
Morocco Morocco
(including Southern Provinces)
No Illegal since 1962
Penalty: Up to 3 to 6 years imprisonment with hard labour.[53][73]
No No No No No No
Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic
(Disputed territory; excluding Southern Provinces)
No Illegal since 1944 (as part of the Overseas Province of Spanish Sahara)
Penalty: Up to 3 years imprisonment.[53][74][75]
No No No No No No
South Sudan South Sudan No Illegal since 1899 (as Anglo-Egyptian Sudan)
Penalty: Up to 10 years imprisonment. (not enforced) [53][76]
No No Constitutional ban since 2011[citation needed] No No No No Forms of gender expression are criminalized.
Sudan Sudan No Illegal since 1899 (as Anglo-Egyptian Sudan)
Penalty: Life imprisonment for a third offense of anal sex.[77]
No No No No No No
Tunisia Tunisia No Illegal since 1913 (as the French protectorate of Tunisia)
Penalty: 3 years imprisonment.[53][78]
[79]
No No No No No No

Western Africa

LGBT rights in: Same-sex sexual activity Recognition of same-sex unions Same-sex marriage Adoption by same-sex couples LGB people allowed to serve openly in military Anti-discrimination laws concerning sexual orientation Laws concerning gender identity/expression
Benin Benin Yes Legal (No laws against same-sex sexual activity have ever existed in the country);[53][80]
Age of consent discrepancy[53]
No No No Emblem-question.svg No Emblem-question.svg
Burkina Faso Burkina Faso Yes Legal (No laws against same-sex sexual activity have ever existed in the country)[53] No No Constitutional ban since 1991 No Emblem-question.svg No Emblem-question.svg
Cape Verde Cape Verde Yes Legal since 2004
+ UN decl. sign.[53]
No No No Emblem-question.svg Yes Bans some anti-gay discrimination[53] Emblem-question.svg
The Gambia Gambia No Illegal since 1888 (as the Gambia Colony and Protectorate)
Penalty: Up to Iife imprisonment.[53][81][76]
No No No No No No Forms of gender expression criminalized since 2013[82]
Ghana Ghana No Male illegal since 1860s (as the Gold Coast)
Penalty: Up to 3 years imprisonment. (repeal proposed)
Yes Female always legal[53][83][76]
No No No No No No
Guinea Guinea No Illegal since 1988
Penalty: 6 months to 10 years imprisonment.[84]
No No No No No No
Guinea-Bissau Guinea-Bissau Yes Legal since 1993[53]
+ UN decl. sign.
No No No Emblem-question.svg No Emblem-question.svg
Ivory Coast Ivory Coast Yes Legal (No laws against same-sex sexual activity have ever existed in the country);
Age of consent discrepancy[53]
No No No Emblem-question.svg No Emblem-question.svg
Liberia Liberia No Illegal since 1976
Penalty: 1 year imprisonment. (repeal proposed) [53][85]
No No No No No No
Mali Mali Yes Legal (No laws against same-sex sexual activity have ever existed in the country)[53] No No No Emblem-question.svg No Emblem-question.svg
Mauritania Mauritania No Illegal: Islamic Sharia Law is applied
Penalty: Capital punishment for men, (not enforced); prison and a fine for women.[53][86]
No No No No No No
Niger Niger Yes Legal (No laws against same-sex sexual activity have ever existed in the country);
Age of consent discrepancy[53]
No No No Emblem-question.svg No Emblem-question.svg
Nigeria Nigeria No Illegal under federal law since 1901 (as the Northern Nigeria Protectorate and the Southern Nigeria Protectorate)
Penalty: Up to 14 years imprisonment.
No Death in the states of Bauchi, Borno, Gombe, Jigawa, Kaduna, Kano, Katsina, Kebbi, Niger, Sokoto, Yobe, and Zamfara.[53][87][76]
No No No No No No Forms of gender expression criminalized in Sharia provinces.
Saint Helena Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha
(Overseas Territory of the United Kingdom)
Yes Legal since 2001
+ UN decl. sign.[53]
Yes Legal since 2017 Yes Legal since 2017[88][89] Yes Legal since 2017 Yes UK responsible for defence Yes Bans all anti-gay discrimination Emblem-question.svg
Senegal Senegal No Illegal since 1966
Penalty: 1 to 5 years imprisonment.[53][90]
No No No No No No
Sierra Leone Sierra Leone No Male illegal since 1861 (as the Sierra Leone Colony and Protectorate)
Penalty: Up to life imprisonment (Not enforced).
Yes Female always legal
+ UN decl. sign.[53]
No No No No No No
Togo Togo No Illegal since 1980
Penalty: Fine and 3 years imprisonment, repeal proposed[53]
No No No No No No

Central Africa

LGBT rights in: Same-sex sexual activity Recognition of same-sex unions Same-sex marriage Adoption by same-sex couples LGB people allowed to serve openly in military Anti-discrimination laws concerning sexual orientation Laws concerning gender identity/expression
Cameroon Cameroon No Illegal since 1972
Penalty: Fines to 5 years imprisonment.[53][76] or vigilante execution and torture[91]
No No No No No No
Central African Republic Central African Republic Yes Legal (No laws against same-sex sexual activity have ever existed in the country)[53]
+ UN decl. sign.
No No Constitutional ban since 2016[92] No Emblem-question.svg No Emblem-question.svg
Chad Chad No Illegal since 2017
Penalty: Between 3 months and 2 years in prison, with fines of 50,000 to 500,000 FCFA. (Penal Code, Chapter 2, Article 354) [93]
No No No No No Emblem-question.svg
Democratic Republic of the Congo Democratic Republic of the Congo Yes Legal (No laws against same-sex sexual activity have ever existed in the country)[53] No No Constitutional ban since 2005 No Emblem-question.svg No No
Republic of the Congo Republic of the Congo Yes Legal (No laws against same-sex sexual activity have ever existed in the country);
Age of consent discrepancy[53]
No No No Emblem-question.svg No Emblem-question.svg
Equatorial Guinea Equatorial Guinea Yes Legal (No laws against same-sex sexual activity have ever existed in the country)[53] No No No Emblem-question.svg No Emblem-question.svg
Gabon Gabon Yes Legal since 2020[94]
+ UN decl. sign.
No No No Emblem-question.svg No Emblem-question.svg
São Tomé and Príncipe São Tomé and Príncipe Yes Legal since 2012
+ UN decl. sign.[53]
No No No Emblem-question.svg No Emblem-question.svg

Southeast Africa

LGBT rights in: Same-sex sexual activity Recognition of same-sex unions Same-sex marriage Adoption by same-sex couples LGB people allowed to serve openly in military Anti-discrimination laws concerning sexual orientation Laws concerning gender identity/expression
Burundi Burundi No Illegal since 2009
Penalty: fine, and 3 months to 2 years imprisonment. (repeal proposed) [53][95]
No No Constitutional ban since 2005 No No No No
Kenya Kenya No Illegal since 1897 (as the East Africa Protectorate)
Penalty: up to 14 years imprisonment. (repeal proposed) [53][76]
No No Constitutional ban since 2010[96] No No No Yes[97]
Rwanda Rwanda Yes Legal (No laws against same-sex sexual activity have ever existed in the country)[53]
+ UN decl. sign.
No No Constitutional ban since 2003 No Emblem-question.svg No No
Tanzania Tanzania No Illegal since 1864 (only Zanzibar)
Illegal since 1899
Penalty: Up to life imprisonment.[53][76] Vigilante executions, beatings and torture[98][99] are also tolerated.
No No No No No No
Uganda Uganda No Male illegal since 1894
Female illegal since 2000 Penalty: Life imprisonment. Beatings, torture, or vigilante execution are also common.[100]
No No Constitutional ban since 2005 No No No No

Horn of Africa

LGBT rights in: Same-sex sexual activity Recognition of same-sex unions Same-sex marriage Adoption by same-sex couples LGB people allowed to serve openly in military Anti-discrimination laws concerning sexual orientation Laws concerning gender identity/expression
Djibouti Djibouti Yes / No Ambiguous, punishable through laws regarding laws against public morals.
Penalty: Up to 5 years imprisonment.[53][101]
No No No Emblem-question.svg No Emblem-question.svg
Eritrea Eritrea No Illegal
Penalty: Up to 3 years imprisonment.[53][102] or death[103] Beatings and torture are also tolerated.[104]
No No No No No No
Ethiopia Ethiopia No Illegal
Penalty: Up to 15 years. [53]
No No No No No No
Somalia Somalia No Illegal. Penalty: Up to 3 years prison.
Jubaland No Illegal. Penalty: Up to death in Jubaland.[citation needed]
No No No No No No
Somaliland Somaliland
(Disputed territory)
No Illegal since 1941 (as British Somaliland)
Penalty: Up to 3 years prison, sometimes death sentences.[105]
No No No No No No

Indian Ocean states

LGBT rights in: Same-sex sexual activity Recognition of same-sex unions Same-sex marriage Adoption by same-sex couples LGB people allowed to serve openly in military Anti-discrimination laws concerning sexual orientation Laws concerning gender identity/expression
Comoros Comoros No Illegal
Penalty: 5 years imprisonment and fines.[53][106]
No No No No No Emblem-question.svg
French Southern and Antarctic Lands French Southern and Antarctic Lands
(Overseas territory of France)
Yes Legal
(No laws against same-sex sexual activity have ever existed in the territory)[53]
Yes Civil solidarity pact since 1999 Yes Legal since 2013 Yes Legal since 2013 Yes France responsible for defence Yes Bans all anti-gay discrimination Yes Under French law
Madagascar Madagascar Yes Legal
(No laws against same-sex sexual activity have ever existed in the country);
Age of consent discrepancy[53]
No No No Emblem-question.svg No Emblem-question.svg
Mauritius Mauritius No Male illegal
Penalty: Up to 5 years imprisonment. (not enforced, repeal proposed)
Yes Female always legal[107]
+ UN decl. sign.[53][108]
No No No No Yes Bans all anti-gay discrimination[109][110] Emblem-question.svg
Mayotte Mayotte
(Overseas region of France)
Yes Legal
(No laws against same-sex sexual activity have ever existed in the region)[53]
Yes Civil solidarity pact since 1999 Yes Legal since 2013 Yes Legal since 2013 Yes France responsible for defence Yes Bans all anti-gay discrimination Yes Under French law
Réunion Réunion
(Overseas region of France)
Yes Legal since 1791[53] Yes Civil solidarity pact since 1999 Yes Legal since 2013 Yes Legal since 2013 Yes France responsible for defence Yes Bans all anti-gay discrimination Yes Under French law
Seychelles Seychelles Yes Legal since 2016[111]
+ UN decl. sign.
No No No Emblem-question.svg Yes Bans some anti-gay discrimination[53] Emblem-question.svg

Southern Africa

LGBT rights in: Same-sex sexual activity Recognition of same-sex unions Same-sex marriage Adoption by same-sex couples LGB people allowed to serve openly in military Anti-discrimination laws concerning sexual orientation Laws concerning gender identity/expression
Angola Angola Yes Legal since 2021 [112] No No No No Yes Bans all anti-gay discrimination[113] Emblem-question.svg May possibly change gender under the Código do Registro Civil 2015[114]
Botswana Botswana No Legal since 2019 [115] No No No No Yes Bans some anti-gay discrimination Yes Legal gender change recognized as a constitutional right since 2017[116]
Eswatini Eswatini No Male illegal since the 1880s (not enforced, repeal proposed)
Yes Female always legal[53][76]
No No No No No No
Lesotho Lesotho Yes Male legal since 2012
Female always legal[53]
No No

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