Andrew Mitchell – 2023 Speech on Uganda’s Anti-Homosexuality Act

The speech made by Andrew Mitchell, the Foreign Office Minister, on 29 May 2023.

The UK government is appalled that the Government of Uganda has signed the deeply discriminatory Anti-Homosexuality Bill 2023 into law.

Democracy depends on the guarantee of equal rights under law and freedom from discrimination for everyone in society. This legislation undermines the protections and freedoms of all Ugandans enshrined in the Ugandan Constitution. It will increase the risk of violence, discrimination and persecution, will set back the fight against HIV/AIDs, and will damage Uganda’s international reputation.

As outlined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, everyone is entitled to human rights and freedoms, without distinction of any kind. The recognition of these inherent rights has been hard-won by citizens across the globe. The strongest, safest and most prosperous societies are those in which everyone can live freely, without fear of violence or discrimination, and where all citizens are treated fairly and can play a full and active part in society. The UK is firmly opposed to the death penalty in all circumstances.

We will continue to stand up for these rights and freedoms in Uganda and around the world.