John M. Becker

Gambian Pres: We Will Fight LGBTs Like We Fight Malaria

Filed By John M. Becker | February 19, 2014 8:30 AM | comments

Filed in: Politics
Tags: Africa, foreign aid, Gambia, LGBT, malaria, mosquitoes, shocking, STDs, vermin, Yahya Jammeh

jammeh.jpgYahya Jammeh, dictator of the west African nation of Gambia, further stoked the fires of homophobia on the continent yesterday when he called gays "vermin" and said LGBT people are "detrimental to human existence."

Reuters reports:

"We will fight these vermins called homosexuals or gays the same way we are fighting malaria-causing mosquitoes, if not more aggressively," Jammeh said in a speech on state television to mark the 49th anniversary of Gambia's independence from Britain.

Britain and some other Western nations have threatened to cut aid to governments that pass anti-gay laws.

But Jammeh said his country would defend its sovereignty and Islamic beliefs, and not yield to outside pressure on lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) issues.

"We will therefore not accept any friendship, aid or any other gesture that is conditional on accepting homosexuals or LGBT as they are now baptised by the powers that promote them," he said.

"As far as I am concerned, LGBT can only stand for Leprosy, Gonorrhea, Bacteria and Tuberculosis; all of which are detrimental to human existence," he added.

This isn't the first time Jammeh has made outrageously anti-LGBT remarks. Last year, in a speech he delivered to the United Nations General Assembly in New York, he denounced homosexuality as one of the "biggest threats to human existence," "more deadly than all natural disasters put together." In 2008, Jammeh threatened to decapitate gays and lesbians living in Gambia, and he has also claimed that he can cure AIDS with an herbal body rub and bananas.

The United States sends Gambia millions of dollars in humanitarian assistance every year, and Reuters reports that European Union aid to the country could double in the next seven years.

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