Blogging from the Highlands of Scotland
'From fanaticism to barbarism is only one step' - Diderot

Saturday 29 January 2005

Is the Foreign Office colluding in Uganda's anti-homosexual laws?

Chris Stentaza was a teacher at a church school who was dismissed from his job after speaking at a gay confernece in Manchester fifteen months ago. There is now a warrant out for his arrest in Uganda, which punishes homosexuality with life imprisonment.

He has been invited to be part of a delegation scheduled to meet the secretary to the Church of England's commission responsible for last October's Windsor report, which aims to keep together the Anglican worldwide communion in the wake of the controversy over the promotion of gay clergy within the Church.

He has been denied a visa for the UK on various grounds - and from reading this Guardian article it seems that every time he overcomes the problem that has been raised another objection is found (more like excuse!) to deny him a visa. Why is this happening? Could it be an upcoming election and the sensitivity over 'immigration', or are relations with Uganda simply so important that we cannot afford to jeopardise them when all that is at stake is one victimised gay man? Frankly he would seem to have grounds for claiming asylum here, if he wanted, but probably doesn't (I expect he is being invited simply to speak as part of the delegation); the threat of life imprisonment merely for being gay would seem like a preetty good justification to me. But, what do I know? The government is threatening to confine any one of us it chooses, indefinitely, on grounds which may never be revealed. This is the Alice-through-the looking-glass world we now inhabit.

Read more about machinations in the topsy-turvy world of Anglican politics in this article.

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