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Yahia Zaidi
NGOs oral statement following the formal adoption of the UPR report of Burundi

in BURUNDI, 10/06/2013

23rd session of the Human Rights Council - Item 6, UPR Report, 6 June 2013 Statement of ILGA, International Lesbian and Gay Association. Read by Yahia Zaidi

Video (Chapter 14 on the right hand of the column)

Mr President,

This statement is read on behalf of “Mouvement pour les Libertés Individuelles” (MOLI), a working group promoting individual liberties of LGBTI people.

We would like to thank the Burundian government for taking an active part in the UPR mechanism. However, we would also like to draw your attention to the human rights abuses sexual minorities have experienced in Burundi.

With its Constitution Burundi ratified instruments relating to fundamental human rights based on the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights.

On April 22, 2009, the State of Burundi revised its Penal Code and authorized discrimination against sexual minorities by penalizing homosexuality (article 567). Additionally, an official decree dated June 7, 2011 amending school regulations, included homosexuality as an offense that can result in students being expelled.

Since the institutionalization of homophbia, MOLI has recorded cases of discrimination, verbal and physical attacks, mistreatment, exclusion from family and society, threats, harassment by private persons and extortion by the police.

The State of Burundi has only partially taken sexual minorities’ right to equal access to health care into account by including LGBT people in the strategic plan from the National Council against HIV/AIDS.

We deplore that the Burundian government has rejected the UPR recommendations regarding equality, non-discrimination, and protection granted to every Burundian citizen by the country’s Constitution. We also deplore that the government has rejected the recommendation to repeal article 567 of the Penal Code that criminalizes sexual relations between consenting same sex adults.

Nevertheless, we demand the government provide protection against all forms of discrimination, including physical and verbal violence, on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity.

We also urge the government to develop initiatives in the field of reproductive and sexual health geared toward sexual minorities.
We ask that the Burundian government take action in order to deal with LGBTI-related human rights issues in accordance with its national, local, and international obligations.

Thank you.

Read the report with all the recommendations made to Burundi. Click HERE

 

Note : All recommendations linked to decriminalisation of same sex relations among consenting adults and all those against discrimination based on sexual orientation have been rejected by Burundi as « they are against the morality values of its society ».

 

Click on the top left hand of the screen for other language versions

Translation from French, Romain Muller, proofreading Christa Levko

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