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LGBT Groups Call for Burma’s Penal Code to Be Amended

in MYANMAR, 08/12/2013

A lesbian, bisexual, gay and transgender (LGBT) rights group is calling for the Burma government to abolish an article in its 19th century penal code that outlaws same-sex relationships, activists said.

The penal code, which was first brought in under British colonial rule, still includes Article 377, under which “intercourse against the order of nature” carries a prison sentence of up to 10 years. The article is used to punish same-sex couples and effectively rules out same-sex couples living openly in Burma.

The Rangoon-based LBGT Rights Network—an alliance of 19 civil society organizations—said it is going to lobby the government to scrap the article, which it says is discriminatory.

“We do not have equal rights here. We need it,” said Tin Ko Ko, a member of the LGBT Rights Network.

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