Sudan government removes death penalty and flogging as punishments for gay sex

Sudan has abolished the death penalty for homosexuality
(Photo: Gay Times)

Homosexuals in Sudan will no longer receive the death penalty or be flagged as punishment for gay sex. However, ‘offenders’ still face life imprisonment for their ‘crimes’, with sentences starting at five years.

This is part of a raft of reforms announced by the transitional government over the weekend. Other reforms include; scrapping punishments for apostasy, allowing consumption of alcohol, banning female genital mutilation (FGM), and lifting restrictions on female dress. 

But many in conservative Sudan are not pleased with the reforms and have taken to the streets to express their outrage.

Protesters chant slogans in support of maintaining Islamic Sharia as a part of the draft constitution as they march during a demonstration along al-Siteen Street (Sixty) in the Khartoum East district of Sudan's capital on July 17, 2020
Protestors are not happy with the reforms (Photo: DailyMail)

The new government has pledged to lead the country to democracy after last year’s toppling of Islamist autocrat Omar al-Bashir, who had reigned since 1989. 

Same-sex relations are criminalised in most of Africa and the Middle East. Sudan was one of six countries, including Iran, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Nigeria, and Somalia, that imposed the death penalty for gay sex, according to the LGBT+ rights group ILGA.

Under Sudan’s old sodomy law, gay men faced 100 lashes for the first offence, five years in jail for the second, and the death penalty the third time around. The punishments have been reduced to prison terms, ranging from five years to life.