OUTGOING U.S. AMBASSADOR TO LIBERIA SURPRISED AT ANTI-GAY BILL IN SENATE
The U.S. ambassador to Liberia said she was surprised to learn that gay rights are an issue in the West African nation, where homosexuality is illegal and lawmakers are considering tougher penalties for same-sex relationships.
The Washington Times newspaper reports that Ambassador Linda Thomas-Greenfield, who is ending her tour in Monrovia after more than three years, repeated U.S. policy toward homosexuals as she gave farewell interviews to reporters last week.
“I support the issue of human rights for every person regardless of their orientation, their race or nationality,” she said. “I strongly believe that gay rights are human rights.
Washington provides Liberia about $200 million a year in aid, she said.
The Liberian Senate is considering a bill to declare same-sex marriage illegal and homosexual acts a felony punishable by up to 10 years in prison.
“We are only strengthening the existing law,” said Sen. Jewel Taylor, who introduced the measure.
Current law treats homosexual acts as a misdemeanor with a maximum punishment of up to a year in jail.
Source: Washington Times