It’s been reported that Usaam Auf Mukwaya, a leading gay rights activist in Uganda, was arrested and tortured by police in Kampala on the weekend.
Afrol News says that Mukwaya was arrested late on Friday and taken to an interrogation room in the capital where he was “aggressively” questioned about Uganda’s LGBT movement.
It further claims that he “was cut around the hands and tortured with a machine that applies extreme pressure to the body, preventing breathing and causing severe pain before being driven out of the building and dumped.”
He was reportedly able to phone colleagues who found him “weak, filthy and without shoes and some of his clothing.”
Mukwaya is one the three Ugandan activists arrested in June while protesting against the Ugandan government’s stance on homosexuality at an international HIV/AIDS conference in the country.
Uganda’s government is notoriously anti-gay and has been accused of arresting and intimidating its gay and lesbian citizens. Recently, President Yoweri Museveni lauded his country-men and women for rejecting homosexuality.
In February, Archbishop Desmond Tutu signed a letter, along with 120 other religious leaders, demanding that the Ugandan government take action to end “verbal assaults and legal attacks of your government on the human rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LBGT) people.”
Homosexuality is illegal in Uganda, with offenders facing up to five years in prison. Same-sex marriage has also been banned. Various government officials have repeatedly called for a crackdown on LGBT people.