Gay sex could become legal in Seychelles

African island nation has taken its first steps to legalize male homosexuality by asking the public for their views

Gay sex could become legal in Seychelles
11 August 2014

The Seychelles is to take its first steps to legalize gay sex today (11 August).

The Judicial College has invited members of the public to discuss for the presentation and discussion on the ‘discrimination of gay people, marriage equality and morality’ at a forum this evening.

Back in 2011, the 155- island African country agreed with the United Nations it would decriminalize homosexuality.

While same-sex female relationships are now legal, male homosexuality is still punishable by up to 14 years in prison.

But that could now change.

With this judicial review, the Seychelles could finally determine whether the penal code law that bans sodomy directly discriminates against gay people.

The government makes it clear in the constitution ‘all persons must be free from discrimination on all grounds’.

A spokesman has said the government will decide ‘as to when and to what extent the legislation could be amended to better guarantee the constitutional precept that lesbian, gay, bisexual and transsexual persons are not to be discriminated in the Seychelles.’

Sandra Michel, the Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, said ‘the chance of relevant laws would come pretty soon’.

Unlike other countries where it is illegal to be gay, Seychelles does attempt to protect the LGBT community in other ways.

There are employment laws that directly protect workers on the basis of sexual orientation.

The government has also claimed no person has ever been directly prosecuted under the sodomy laws.

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