Steven Monjeza and Tiwonge Chimbalanga

There are reports that the US and Germany are withholding aid to Malawi due to concerns about the country’s anti-gay laws.

According to Africa Review, the US has followed Germany in suspending aid to Malawi over its “homosexuality law” and human rights abuses.

At stake is a $350 million grant to improve the country’s energy infrastructure.

Malawi was thrown into the international spotlight in December 2009 after the arrest of Steven Monjeza and Tiwonge Chimbalanga on charges of homosexuality.

They were jailed for 14 years but were later grudgingly pardoned and released by President Bingu wa Mutharika following intervention by the United Nations Secretary General, Ban Ki-moon.

Homosexuality remains illegal in the African country under laws prohibiting “unnatural offences” and “public decency” with penalties including corporal punishment and imprisonment.

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