President Salva Kiir Mayardit
The Republic of South Sudan, which was proclaimed a country earlier this week, is not expected to support LGBT equality, based on past comments by its president.
In May last year, before the January referendum which saw the region’s citizens vote for independence from Sudan, South Sudan’s President Salva Kiir Mayardit made a speech promising a new Sudan where “all citizens” enjoy “equal rights” and a country based on “democracy, equality and justice”.
Speaking to RNW’s Miles Ashdown in July last year, however, President Kiir made his feelings about LGBT rights clear.
When asked by Ashdown if his promise of a democratic and equal South Sudan would also include equality and justice for homosexual Sudanese men and women, Kiir replied:”It is not in our character”.
“It is not even something that anybody can talk about here in southern Sudan in particular.
“It is not there and if anybody wants to import or to export it to Sudan, I will not get the support and it will always be condemned by everybody,” he said.
According to LGBT Asylum News, before becoming a country, the douthern Sudan region adopted a penal code in 2008 that prohibits sodomy, which is assumed to still be in place.
The new country’s motto is “Justice, Liberty, Prosperity”.