The International Criminal Court in The Hague, Netherlands.
It’s been reported that the International Criminal Court (ICC) is considering investigating three key players behind Uganda’s anti-gay campaigns and the ‘kill gays bill’.
Ugandan human rights activist Magembe Norman has launched an online petition urging the court to “investigate and prosecute the top three homophobic Ugandans for crimes against humanity”.
Norman, who has filed a complaint with the ICC, points to three particular men – David Bahati, Giles Muhame and Martin Ssempa – who have been outspoken in targeting gays and lesbians in the African country.
Bahati is the author of Uganda’s still pending Anti-Homosexuality Bill, first tabled in 2009, which included plans to introduce the death penalty for gay adults who were repeat offenders.
Muhame was the managing editor of the Rolling Stone tabloid that maliciously published a front page article including the names, addresses, and photographs of 100 homosexuals alongside a yellow banner that read “Hang Them”. The article has been linked to the murder of gay activist David Kato in January 2011.
Ssempa, a Ugandan pastor, is described as the face of Uganda’s anti-homosexuality movement and is notorious for showing extreme gay porn to the public in an attempt to illustrate the “perversity” of gay sexuality. He’s actively promoted the Anti-Homosexuality bill and has lobbied for its passing.
“We should never allow the above notorious homophobic Ugandans to get away with the pain they have inflicted onto the gays in Uganda and we need to stand up and take action as an International community,” said Norman.
He added that if the men are prosecuted it “would send a warning message to others that persecuting someone based solely on sexual orientation and gender identity is illegal and a criminal offense…”
According to Gay Star News, the ICC has said in a letter that they are “analysing the situation” to assess whether there is a reasonable basis on which to prosecute the three men.
A move to target to the Ugandan homophobes is unlikely to be welcomed by some African countries. The court is already facing an African backlash, led by Kenya, which believes that the ICC is biased and is only targeting Africans.
Kenya is reportedly lobbying for other African countries to leave the ICC’s jurisdiction after Kenyan Deputy President William Ruto and President Uhuru Kenyatta were charged with stirring up ethnic bloodletting that left 1,200 people dead following a disputed 2007 election.