World homosexuality laws

Map showing the status of homosexuality laws of the world.      No information Homosexuality legal      Same sex marriages      Same sex unions      No same sex unions      International marriage licenses recognized Homosexuality illegal      Minimal penalty      Large penalty      Life in prison      Death penalty      No info on penalty

The countries of the world have a wide variety of laws relating to sexual relations between people of the same sex - everything from full same-sex marriage to the death penalty as punishment for homosexual conduct.

In addition to laws against the practice of homosexuality, many countries around the world consider calling a person homosexual sufficient grounds for a libel lawsuit.

History of homosexuality lawsEdit

The first recorded laws supposedly against sexual intercourse between men are dated by scholars to circa 550 BC, during the Babylonian captivity of the Jewish people[citation needed]; they are recorded in Leviticus (though conservative scholars date Leviticus to be much older)[citation needed], and they prescribe the death penalty. At the time same-sex relations were incorporated into many pagan religions[citation needed]. Some people believe that this is the ultimate origin of punitive laws targeting homosexual relations. This pattern continued throughout history with punitive laws arising from traditional interpretations of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam[citation needed]. With the advent of colonialism this attitude spread along with political control by the imperial powers of the nations with Abrahamic state religion[citation needed]; however, the fact that homosexuals were legally persecuted in communist China (a country which neither adopted an Abrahamic religion nor was colonized) and that homosexuality in the People's Republic was not decriminalized until 1997[1] calls the universal application of this theory into at least some question. Often an Abrahamic religion is the primary factor when accounting for a law against homosexuality and the major supporter.[citation needed]

Homosexuality lawsEdit

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This is a list of laws around the world concerning homosexuality, and is arranged alphabetically by region. It should be noted that the list should not be assumed to represent a standard for measuring a nation's views, per se. Nations which have retained negative laws may, in practice, be less oppressive than the laws suggest, as the laws are not enforced. Similarly, a country which lacks laws against homosexual behaviour may possess a culture which is openly hostile and thus persecutes individuals by other means. No country has criminalised solely female-female sex; nations either criminalise all forms of homosexual behaviour or just male homosexuality. Homosexual behaviour remains illegal in over 80 countries, including some which even ban heterosexual sodomy. (Note: the understanding of sodomy can include anal sex, oral sex, fornication (i.e. sex outside of marriage) or even any sexual behaviour that does not lead to procreation within marriage. In tables below the age of consent for same sex relationships is the same as for heterosexuals, unless it is otherwise noted.

Country names marked "(☆)" feature special "LGBT rights" articles about the country in question.


CountryLaws against homosexualityPenaltySame-sex UnionsLaws against discriminationAdoptionComments
AlgeriaYesFine - 3 years-NoNoSee LGBT rights in Algeria.
AngolaYesLabour camps-NoNoPage 6 of [2] and LGBT rights in Angola.
BeninYes3 years-NoNo 
BotswanaYesFine - years-NoNo 
Burkina FasoNo--NoNoSee LGBT rights in Burkina Faso.
CameroonYesFine - 5 years-NoNoSee LGBT rights in Cameroon.
Cape VerdeNo--NoNoSee LGBT rights in Cape Verde.
Central African RepublicNo--NoNoSee LGBT rights in the Central African Republic.
ChadNo--NoNoSee LGBT rights in Chad.
ComorosYesFine - 5 years-NoNoSee LGBT rights in Comoros.
Republic of the CongoNo--NoNoSee LGBT rights in the Republic of the Congo.
Democratic Republic of the CongoNo-NoNoNoSee LGBT rights in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
Côte d'IvoireNo--NoNo-
DjiboutiYes10 – 12 years-NoNoSee LGBT rights in Djibouti.
EgyptNo*-No[3] and LGBT rights in Egypt
Equatorial GuineaNo--NoNo-
EritreaYes3 – 10 years-NoNo-
EthiopiaYes10 days - 3 years-NoNoSee LGBT rights in Ethiopia.
GabonNo--NoNoSee LGBT rights in Gabon.
GambiaYesFine - 14 years-NoNo-
GhanaYes?-NoNoSee LGBT rights in Ghana.
GuineaYes6 months - 3 years-NoNo-
Guinea BissauYesLabour camps-NoNoPage 17 of [4]
KenyaMale onlyFine - 14 years-NoNoSee LGBT rights in Kenya.
LesothoMale only?-NoNo-
LibyaYesFine - 5 years-NoNo-
MalawiYes? - 14 years-NoNo-
MaliNo--NoNoSee LGBT rights in Mali.
MoroccoYes6 months - 3 years-NoNoSee LGBT rights in Morocco.
MozambiqueYesLabour camps-NoNoPage 25 of [5].
NamibiaNo--YesNoConstitutional protection for sexual orientation in Namibia since 2005 and laws against discrimination in the labour code since 1992.
NigerNo--NoNoSee LGBT rights in Niger.
NigeriaYes*5 – 14 years/Death-NoNo*Areas under Sharia have instituted death for men and women. Any content, avocating groups or associations, support, talking to, marriage, etc. regarding GLBT persons can land you in jail for at least four years [6]. See LGBT rights in Nigeria.
RwandaNo--NoNo [7], [8].
São Tomé and PríncipeYesLabour camps-NoNoPage 34 of [9].
SenegalYes1 month - 5 years-NoNo-
SeychellesYesFine - 2 years-NoNo-
Sierra LeoneYesLife-Yes*No*The Anti-Corruption Commission stated in a press release that in a bid to attract competent and qualified staff, they operate a transparent recruitment policy, which even forbids discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation.
SomaliaYes*Death-NoNo*Areas under Sharia have instituted death for men and women.
South AfricaNo-Same-sex marriageYesYesConstitutional protection for sexual orientation in South Africa since 1996 and the first country in Africa to legalise same-sex marriage. See LGBT rights in South Africa
SudanYes5 years - Death-NoNo-
SwazilandMale only*Fine US$90 - Prison-NoNo*Pending law, page 9 (Number 12), includes outlawing lesbian sex conduct. [10] and page 37 [11].
TanzaniaYes30 years - Life-NoNoIn Zanzibar male homosexual acts are punished with up to 25 years imprisonment or fine. Lesbian acts are punished with up 7 years imprisonment or fine. See LGBT rights in Tanzania.
TogoYesFine - 3 years-NoNo-
TunisiaYesFine - 3 years-NoNoSee LGBT rights in Tunisia.
UgandaMale onlyFine - Life-NoNoThe first country in the world to have a constitutional ban on same-sex marriage (since 2004).[2]
ZambiaMale onlyFine - 15 years-NoNo-
ZimbabweMale onlyFine - 1 year-NoNoIn July the Zimbabwe government passed the "sexual deviancy laws". [12], [13] and LGBT rights in Zimbabwe.


CountryLaws against homosexualityPenaltySame-sex UnionsLaws against discriminationAdoptionComments
Afghanistan??NoNo?? - Unsure if homosexuality is a crime or not since the country is undergoing a period of relative chaos due to the continuing battles between NATO forces and the resurgent Taliban, but the death penalty (imposed under the Taliban) is no longer enforced. The Penal Code from 1976 in force, stipulates long imprisonment for adultery and pederasty. [14] and LGBT rights in Afghanistan.
BahrainMale onlyFine - 10 years-NoNoSee LGBT rights in Bahrain.
BangladeshYesLife prison - death-NoNo- LGBT rights in Bangladesh.
BhutanYes*1 month - 1 year-NoNo*In 2004, the penal code of Bhutan, page 9 of [15]. However, there are no known cases of anyone having ever been charged with this petty misdemeanor. Little is known about gay life in Bhutan, as Bhutanese culture does not share the typical western view of heterosexuality and homosexuality. Some people have even called it a bisexual society, though this is disputed. [16].
BruneiYesFine - 10 years-NoNo-
CambodiaNo--NoNoFormer king Norodom Sihanouk has called for legalisation of gay marriage. See LGBT rights in Cambodia.
China (PRC)No--NoNoMarriage laws under-review. See [17] and GLBT rights in China
Hong KongNo--Considered*No*AD under consideration. See LGBT rights in China#Hong Kong.
IndiaYes*Fine -/10 years-NoNo*Law remains on books since 1860, but government does not prosecute, criminalizes "carnal intercourse against the order of nature with any man, woman, or animal". Section 377 is currently facing constitutional challenge at the Delhi High Court in a petition filed by Naz Foundation.[3] Homosexual marriages are de facto banned. See LGBT rights in India.
IndonesiaNo*--NoNo*In 2002, the Aceh province was given the right to instate Islamic sharia by laws by the national parliament. Such law only applies to Muslims, and for example the city of Palembang in Southern Sumatra has introduced jail and hefty fines, for homosexual sex [18] and in 2003, a proposal to nationally criminalize homosexuality failed. See LGBT rights in Indonesia.
IranYesFor men:Prison-NoNoSex change operations have been given official government support as means to cure a gender identity disease. Law in Iran, in general, is not formally in order and is often abused by government officials. There have not been official executions for homosexuality in many years, although some claim that teenagers Mahmoud Asgari and Ayaz Marhoni were executed for consensual homosexual sex and not for rape. See LGBT rights in Iran.
IraqNo*--NoNo*No provisions of the current Iraqi criminal code deal with homosexuality. The U.S. occupation restored the criminal code back to its original 1969 edition. Before 2003, the criminal code was amended in 2001 to include the death penalty for homosexuality. However, currently, death squads are operating in the country killing gays. [19] and LGBT rights in Iraq.
IsraelNo-Unregistered cohabition, Recognition of same-sex marriages performed abroadYes?Fairly strong support for giving legal recognition to same-sex couples. Only Middle Eastern nation to support gay rights legislation. The armed forces of Israel allow service without any distinction based on sexual orientation. See LGBT rights in Israel.
JapanNo, but a higher age of consent in some prefectures--YesNoAnti-discrimination law in Human Rights Act bill (2001) was failed in 2002. Similar proposal failed in 2005. See LGBT rights in Japan.
JordanNo*--NoNo*While not a crime, reports have shown that LGBT people can be victims of vigilante "honour killings". See LGBT rights in Jordan.
KazakhstanNo--NoNoSee LGBT rights in Kazakhstan.
LaosNo--NoNoThe Penal Code: [20], [21].
LebanonYes--NoNoA small public growing campaign exists to legalize homosexual relations between consenting adults in private, though it is often viewed unfavorably. Honor killings are present among the population. See LGBT rights in Lebanon.
MacauNo--NoNoSee LGBT rights in China.
MalaysiaYesFine - 20 years-NoNoFormer Deputy Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim, who was himself jailed for homosexuality, has called for their repeal. Marina Mahathir, the daughter of former Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad, has called for an end to discrimination based on sexual orientation.[22] However, during Mahathir's term as Prime Minister, he warned gay ministers in foreign countries not to bring along their partners while visiting the nation. [23]. See LGBT rights in Malaysia.
MaldivesMale onlyFine - 10 years-NoNo-
MongoliaNo*--NoNo*"Satisfaction of sexual desire in unnatural

manner" in the Penal Code of 2002, and cannot be used for consensual homosexuality in private anymore. [24].

Myanmar/BurmaYes*10 years - Life-NoNo*One of the largest democracy activist organisations in exile has voted to decriminalise same-sex relations. See [25].
NepalNo--NoNoThe Penal Code of Nepal was struck down by Supreme Court on 21 December2007 [26].
North KoreaNo--NoNoNo public discussion or reference to homosexuality is allowed. Seen as a capitalist disease or vice. See LGBT rights in North Korea.
OmanYesFine - 3 years-NoNo-
PakistanYes*2 years - Life-NoNo*The law applies to both men and women [27] and LGBT rights in Pakistan.
Palestinian Authority (Gaza)Male only*? - 10 years-NoNo*Male homosexuality is illegal in Gaza, by the Criminal Code Ordinance 1936 still in force. Some are arrested or tortured and LGBT Palestinians often attempt to flee to Israel as they are targeted for death in PA-controlled areas. [28], [29] and LGBT Palestinian issues.
PhilippinesNo-No Considered*No*AD in consideration and the Communist Party assist same-sex marriage. Same-sex marriages banned since 2003, yet there is a large support for repeal. See LGBT rights in the Philippines and Homosexuality in the Philippines
QatarYesFine - 5 years-NoNo-
Saudi ArabiaYesDeath-NoNoJail time, fines or whipping may be used in lieu of the death penalty. See LGBT rights in Saudi Arabia
SingaporeYes*2 years*-NoNo*Section 377A of the Penal Code, makes sex between males a punishment for up to 2 years jail - The law is rarely enforced, usually when it suspects risk of HIV infections during events such as sex parties [30]. Government officials have made calls to embrace diversity and to legalize anal and oral sex or 'Gross indencency' between males [31]. Former Prime Minister Goh Chok Tong stated that openly gay people can be employed in the civil workforce. See LGBT rights in Singapore.
South KoreaNo--NoNoNo mention of homosexuality in Constitution or Civil Penal Code, although in practice widespread discrimination against gay people and censorship against gay websites is fairly common. Military Penal Code states up to a maximum of one year servitude or dishonorable discharge for homosexual acts performed while on active duty. See LGBT rights in South Korea.
Sri LankaYesFine - 10 years-NoNo-
SyriaYesFine, though it is rarely enforced-NoNoSee LGBT rights in Syria.
Taiwan (ROC)No-ConsideredYesNoPending law allows civil unions or same-sex marriage. See LGBT rights in Taiwan.
ThailandNo--NoNoFrom 2005, Thailand allows LGBT people to serve in the military [32] and LGBT rights in Thailand.
TurkmenistanMale onlyFine - 2 years-NoNo-
United Arab EmiratesYesUnknown - Death-NoNoSee LGBT rights in United Arab Emirates.
UzbekistanMale only*Fine* - 3 years*-NoNo*"Besoqolbozlik" (Only applies to anal sex) [33], page 43 of [34].
VietnamNo--NoNoSame-sex marriages banned since 1998. Reports suggest that this ban extends to a prohibition on domestic partnerships and civil unions and/or having any sort of public commitment celebration.
West BankNo--NoNoSee LGBT rights in Israel.
YemenYesFlogging - Death-NoNo-


Note: membership of the European Union not only requires repeal of anti-homosexuality legislation, the Treaty of Amsterdam requires anti-discrimination legislation to be enacted by its member states.[4]

CountryLaws against homosexualityPenaltySame-sex UnionsLaws against discriminationAdoptionComments
AlbaniaNo--NoNoSee LGBT rights in Albania.
AndorraNo-Stable unionsYes*Yes*AD since 2005 [35] and LGBT rights in Andorra.
ArmeniaNo--NoNoSee LGBT rights in Armenia.
AustriaNo-Unregistered cohabitationYesNoUnregistered cohabitation since 2003; Registered partnership Bill 2008 getting indroduced in March 2008. See LGBT rights in Austria.
AzerbaijanNo--NoNoSee LGBT rights in Azerbaijan.
BelgiumNo-Same-sex marriageYesYesSee LGBT rights in Belgium.
BelarusNo--NoNoLGBT people can be subjected to discrimination by the people and the government. See LGBT rights in Belarus.
Bosnia-HerzegovinaNo--YesNoAD in Gender Equality Act since 2003. See LGBT rights in Bosnia and Herzegovina
BulgariaNo--YesNoLGBT rights in Bulgaria.
CroatiaNo-Unregistered cohabitationYesNoSee LGBT rights in Croatia.
CyprusNo*, age of consent is 17 for all. [36]--YesNo*Illegal in Northern Cyprus until 1 January 2009, by a new Criminal Code repealing the ban (See below). See LGBT rights in Cyprus.
Czech RepublicNo-Registered partnershipYesNoSee LGBT rights in the Czech Republic.
DenmarkNo-Registered partnershipYesNoFirst country to legally recognise same-sex partnerships of any kind in 1989. See LGBT rights in Denmark.
EstoniaNo--YesNoSee LGBT rights in Estonia.
Faroe IslandsNo-ConsideredYes*No*AD from 2006 [37] and LGBT rights in the Faroe Islands.
FinlandNo-Registered partnershipYesNoSee LGBT rights in Finland.
FranceNo-pacte civil de solidaritéYesNoIt should be noted that pacte civil de solidarité (French civil unions) is a common choice with all couples. See LGBT rights in France.
GeorgiaNo--YesNoSee LGBT rights in Georgia (country).
GermanyNo-Registered partnershipYesNoConstitutional protection for sexual orientation in some states of Germany. See LGBT rights in Germany.
GibraltarNo, age of consent 18 just for male-male sex and 16 for others from 1993; Soon could be equalized [38]-ConsideredYesNoAD since 2004 [39]. See LGBT rights in Gibraltar
GreeceNo, age of consent is 15 for all, but just for male-male sex (For the partner over 18) is 17-ConsideredYesNoSee LGBT rights in Greece.
Bailiwick of Guernsey - Including Alderney, Herm and SarkNo, age of consent 18 for male-male and 16 for other acts from 1999; Soon could be equalized [40]-ConsideredConsidered*No*AD in consideration and a proposed law to legalise civil partnerships passed its first reading in the States of Deliberation in 2006 [41].
HungaryNo-Unregistered cohabitation; registered partnership from 01/01/2009 [42]YesNoregistered partnership law will be effective on 01/01/2009 [43]. See LGBT rights in Hungary.
IcelandNo-Registered partnershipYesYesSee LGBT rights in Iceland.
IrelandNo-Civil partnerships bills being introduced in 2008YesNoCivil Partnerships Bill 2008 - Currently awaiting approval [44] [45] [46]. See LGBT rights in the Republic of Ireland.
Isle of ManNo-Yes (recognised only)Yes (since 2005)No**Adoption (Same-Sex Couples) Bill 2008 will be introduced to the House of Keys in April 2008. See LGBT rights in the Isle of Man.
ItalyNo-Some regionsYes (since 2003)NoCivil unions are recognized in Tuscany, Umbria, Emilia Romagna, Campania, Marche, Veneto, Puglia, Lazio, Liguria and Abruzzo. See LGBT rights in Italy.
Bailiwick of JerseyNo-ConsideredYesYes [47] Civil partnerships, AD laws and Adoption provided Civil partnerships in Jersey.
KosovoNo--Yes*No*AD in Kosovo since 2001 and in Draft Constitution (effective from April 2008). See LGBT rights in Kosovo.
LatviaNo--YesNoSame-sex marriages banned. See LGBT rights in Latvia.
LiechtensteinNo-ConsideredConsideredConsideredRegistered partnerships, AD laws and Adoption are under consideration; See LGBT rights in Liechtenstein.
LithuaniaNo--YesNoSee LGBT rights in Lithuania.
LuxembourgNo-Registered partnershipsYesNoSee LGBT rights in Luxembourg.
MacedoniaNo--Yes (since 2005)NoSee LGBT rights in Macedonia.
MaltaNo--YesNoSee LGBT rights in Malta.
MoldovaNo--ConsideredNoSee LGBT rights in Moldova.
MonacoNo-NoNoNoSee LGBT rights in Monaco.
MontenegroNo--NoNoSee LGBT rights in Montenegro.
NetherlandsNo-Same-sex marriage and Registered partnershipsYesYesThe first country in the world to legalize same-sex marriage in 2001. See LGBT rights in the Netherlands.
NorwayNo-Same-sex marriage and Registered partnershipYesYes (Eff. 1-1-2009)See LGBT rights in Norway.
PolandNo-Considered*YesNo*Civil unions considered. See LGBT rights in Poland.
PortugalNo-Registered partnershipYesNoConstitutional protection for sexual orientation in Portugal since 2004. See LGBT rights in Portugal.
RomaniaNo--YesNoSee LGBT rights in Romania.
RussiaNo--Yes*No*Anti-Discrimination based on sexual orientation from a court ruling in 2005. See LGBT rights in Russia.
San MarinoNo--NoNoSee LGBT rights in San Marino.
SerbiaNo--Yes*No*Serbia ban discrimination based on sexual orientation in Radio Emitters Law since 2002. See LGBT rights in Serbia.
SlovakiaNo--YesNoSee LGBT rights in Slovakia.
SloveniaNo-Registered partnershipYesNoSee LGBT rights in Slovenia.
SpainNo-Same-sex marriageYesYesUnregistered and Registered Cohabitation in a number of regions. See LGBT rights in Spain.
SwedenNo-Registered partnershipYesYesConstitutional protection for sexual orientation in Sweden since 2003 and partnerships have the same rights as heterosexual marriage including adoption, but are legally distinct from marriage. See LGBT rights in Sweden.
SwitzerlandNo-Registered partnershipNoNoConstitutional protection for sexual orientation in Switzerland since 2000 based on "way of life". See LGBT rights in Switzerland.
TurkeyNo--NoNoSee LGBT rights in Turkey.
Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (not recognised internationally) No* [48]Fine/10–14 yearsNoNoNo*The sodomy law will be "repealed" by a new Criminal Code, effective from 1 January 2009. See LGBT rights in Cyprus.
UkraineNo-NoConsideredNoSee LGBT rights in Ukraine.
United KingdomNo-Civil partnershipYesYes**England, Wales and Northern Ireland since 2005, Scotland since 2006; See LGBT rights in the United Kingdom.
Vatican CityNo*-NoYes**No*Homosexuality is technically legal, but its acting out is contrary to the teachings of the Roman Catholic Church. See LGBT rights in the Vatican City

North AmericaEdit

CountryLaws against homosexualityPenaltySame-sex UnionsLaws against discriminationAdoptionComments
AnguillaNo-No--Anguilla is a British Overseas Territory. Homosexual behaviour between two consenting adults in private was expressly legalised under the Caribbean Territories (Criminal Law) Order, 2000.
Antigua and BarbudaYes15 years-No-British laws are not applied to Antigua & Barbuda, and therefore the Sexual Offenses Act 1995 criminalising homosexual acts, is enforceable.[49].
ArubaNo-Can not be performed, but is recognisedYesYesThe Dutch Government states that as part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, Aruba is obliged to recognise civil unions and same-sex marriage as valid. However, Aruba cannot perform SSM's, but has to be recognised by order of the Supreme Court in 2007 [50] LGBT rights in Aruba
BahamasNo, same-gender sex "in public" is a 20 year jail sentence and the age of consent "in private" for homosexual sex is 18, 16 for heterosexual sex [51]--No-See LGBT rights in the Bahamas.
BarbadosYesLife-No-Laws currently under review - still illegal, but not enforced [52].
BelizeYes*10 years-No-*Homosexuality re-criminalised from 2003. See [53] and also under section 26 ii (d) of the immigration act 1958, "Any prostitute or homosexual or any person who may be living on or receiving or may have been living on or receiving the proceeds of prostitution or homosexual acts." is outlawed from incoming to Belize. See [54].
BermudaNo, age of consent 18 just for male-male sex, 16 for others from 1994 [55]-ConsideredConsidered*-*AD in consideration [56].
British Virgin IslandsNo-NoYes; discrimination on grounds of sexuality is prohibited under the 2007 Constitution-British Virgin Islands is a British Overseas Territory. Homosexual behaviour between two consenting adults in private was legalised under the Caribbean Territories (Criminal Law) Order, 2000.
CanadaNo, see anal sex in section 159 in the Criminal Code. However, the higher age of consent for anal sex has been recognised as unconstitutional by both the Ontario Court of Appeal in Re Carmen M and the Quebec Court of Appeal in R v. Roy.] [57]-Same-sex marriageYesYesAnti-discriminatory laws provided by constitution and Egan v. Canada; in all provincial/territorial civil rights codes since Vriend v. Alberta. Common-law marriage since M. v. H., 1999; SSM since Civil Marriage Act, 2005. See LGBT rights in Canada.
Cayman IslandsNo-NoYes-Cayman Islands is a British Dependent Territory. Homosexuality between two consenting adults in private was legalised under the Caribbean Territories (Criminal Law) Order, 2000.
Costa RicaNo-ConsideredYes*-*Anti-discrimination law since 1998. See [58]; Same-sex marriages and 'scandalous sodomy' is banned. See LGBT rights in Costa Rica
CubaNo-Considered*No-*Civil unions or partnerships may be considered; see LGBT rights in Cuba.
DominicaYes10 years-No-From 1995 to 2000, 35 persons were arrested for the crime of buggery [59].
Dominican RepublicNo--No--
El SalvadorNo-NoNoNoThere is much discrimination within society, making it uncomfortable for people to come out
GreenlandNo-YesYes-See Civil Union.
GrenadaMale only10 years-No-.
GuadeloupeNo-Pacte civil de solidaritéYes-Guadeloupe is a Département Français d'Outre-mer, so French Law is in force. See LGBT rights in France.
GuatemalaNo--No-AD in Youth and Childhood Act since 1997.
HaitiNo--No-See LGBT rights in Haiti.
HondurasNo--No-Same-sex marriages and adoption banned in the Constitution since 2005. See LGBT rights in Honduras.
JamaicaMale only10 years hard labour-No-Jamaica has been quoted as the worst place in all of the Americas for LGBT people. See LGBT rights in Jamaica.
MartiniqueNo-Pacte civil de solidarité.Yes-Martinique is a Département Français d'Outre-mer, so French Law is in force. See LGBT rights in France.
MexicoNo-Civil unions (Mexico City and Coahuila)Yes*-*Mexican Congress reformed the Constitution in 2001, to forbid discrimination of any kind; in 2003, this change produced the Federal Law to Prevent Discrimination that forbids discrimination by sexual orientation. Civil unions (Mexico City and Coahuila). See LGBT rights in Mexico.
MontserratNo-No--Montserrat is a British Overseas Territory. Homosexual behaviour between two consenting adults in private was legalised under the Caribbean Territories (Criminal Law) Order, 2000.
Netherlands AntillesNo-Can not be performed, only recognisedYesYesAs part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, civil unions and same-sex marriage are fully recognised as valid; however, they cannot be performed in the Netherlands Antilles themselves. See LGBT rights in the Netherlands.
NicaraguaNo--No-A new Penal Code came into force since 1 March 2008, legalizing homosexuality. See LGBT rights in Nicaragua.
Panama?--No-? Some reports say yes, other say No and LGBT people are banned from the military and police services only. See LGBT rights in Panama.
Puerto RicoNo--Considered*-*Civil unions considered and debated. Puerto Rico is a devoutly Christian island, and homosexuality is not thought to be practised openly. See LGBT rights in Puerto Rico.
Saint Kitts and NevisMale only10 years-No--
Saint LuciaMale onlyFine-10 years-No--
Saint Vincent and the GrenadinesYesFine-10 years-No--
Trinidad and TobagoYes*25 yearsNoNoNo*Applies to both men and women. Also under Article 8 (18/1) of the Immigration Act, homosexual men and women are not allowed to enter the country. [60] and LGBT rights in Trinidad and Tobago.
Turks and Caicos IslandsNo-No--Turks and Caicos Islands is a British Overseas Territory. Homosexuality between two consenting adults in private was legalised under the Caribbean Territories (Criminal Law) Order, 2000.
United StatesNo-Civil Unions: Vermont, Connecticut, New Jersey and New Hampshire. Domestic partnerships: California, Maine, Oregon, Washington, District of Columbia and Hawaii. Same-sex marriage performed and/or recognised: in Massachusetts and California, and only recognized in New York, New Mexico and Rhode Island.In 20 states* and 100 County, City or Council areas10 states and 25 County, City or Council areas*13 states cover sexual orientation and gender identity, 7 only cover sexual orientation and 30 do not cover either.


CountryLaws against homosexual behaviourPenaltySame-sex UnionsLaws against discriminationAdoptionComments
American SamoaNo--NoNo[61].
Australia (including Norfolk Island)No-Civil Partnerships: Australian Capital Territory; Registered partnerships: The Council areas of Yarra, Melbourne and Sydney, Tasmania, South Australia and Victoria (affective 1/12/2008); Unregistered co-habitation: Commonwealth (terrorism legislation only) Northern Territory, Norfolk Island, Queensland, Western Australia and New South WalesYes, all states and territories, (except Commonwealth legislation)In TAS and VIC you can adopt the biological child only; In ACT and WA joint adoption is available; SA, NT, NSW, QLD, NI adoption policies are banned and under review (no review for QLD)Queensland is considering registered relationships" [62] and 100 Commonwealth laws will be amended to include same-gender couples under the Same Sex Relationships (Provision of Equal Entitlements) Bill (No. 1), with both Kevin Rudd and Brendon Nelson supporting this Bill. Same-sex marriage is banned under Commonwealth law since 13 August 2004. See Recognition of same-sex relationships in Australia and LGBT rights in Australia.
Cook IslandsMale only*Fine - 14 yearsNoNoNo*Illegal, despite being part of New Zealand. See LGBT rights in New Zealand.
FijiNo----Constitution outlaws discrimination against sexual orientation. See LGBT rights in Fiji.
GuamNo--Yes*YesGuam is a US Territory which legalized sodomy in 1979. Guam has an anti-discrimination policies since 1999, some defacto relationship rights have been available since 2002 and adoption is available since 2006. However, the fundamentalist Catholic, Mormon and Christian churches have created an repressive atmosphere for gay people here resulting in most gay people being more or less in the closet, which makes it difficult to pull the community together and to come out of the closet, and live an open life.
KiribatiMale onlyFine-14 years-NoNoSee section 467A of the Criminal Code.
Marshall IslandsNo--NoNoSee Criminal Code [63].
NauruMale only14 years hard labour--NoLegislation indexed in written laws of the former criminal code of Queensland (When Nauru became independent from Australia, Queensland in 1962).
New CaledoniaNo--Considered. See Pacte civil de solidarité.ConsideredSee LGBT rights in France.
New ZealandNo-Civil unionsYesYesSee LGBT rights in New Zealand.
NiueMale only*Fine-10 years-NoNo*Illegal, despite being part of New Zealand. See LGBT rights in New Zealand.
PalauMale onlyFine-10 years-NoNo- Illegal as a hold over from US Military Laws when Palau was a US Territory and Christian Missionary influence.
Papua New GuineaMale onlyFine-14 years-NoNo-
Pitcairn IslandNo-YesYesNoPitcairn Island is under British law. See LGBT rights in the United Kingdom.
SamoaYesFine-7 years [64]-NoNo [65].
Solomon IslandsYesFine-14 years-NoNo-
Tahiti / French PolynesiaNo--NoNoSee LGBT rights in France.
TokelauMale only*Fine-10 years-NoNo*Illegal, despite being part of New Zealand. See LGBT rights in New Zealand.
TongaMale only-NoNo--
TuvaluMale onlyFine-14 years-NoNo-
VanuatuNo, age of consent is 18 for same-sex activity, while it is 15 for opposite-sex activity [66]--NoNo-

South AmericaEdit

CountryLaws against homosexual behaviourPenaltySame-sex UnionsLaws against discriminationAdoptionComments
ArgentinaNo-Civil unions in Buenos Aires City, Rio Negro Province and Villa Carlos Paz city in the province of cordoba.YesNoThere are no national anti-discriminatory laws, however, the cities of Buenos Aires and Rosario have specific laws protecting GLBT people against discrimination. Debating Same sex marriage. See LGBT rights in Argentina.
BrazilNo-Civil unions in Rio Grande do Sul.Yes*Yes[5]*Constitutional protection for sexual orientation in some states of Brazil. See LGBT rights in Brazil.
ChileNo, age of consent 18 for same-sex sexual activity, 14 for opposite-sex sexual activity.-Considered*Considered*No*AD and civil unions in considered. See LGBT rights in Chile.
ColombiaNo-Civil unions. Same sex couples have the same rights as heterosexual couplesYesNo*AD considered. See LGBT rights in Colombia.
EcuadorNo-NoYesNoSee LGBT rights in Ecuador.
Falkland IslandsNo-Civil partnershipYesYesFalkland Islands comes under British law. See LGBT rights in the United Kingdom.
French GuianaNo-Yes Pacte civil de solidarité.YesNoFrench Law applies. See LGBT rights in France.
GuyanaMale onlyLife (The only country in South America to be still illegal)-Considered*No*Sexual Orientation protection was about to be amended into the constitution of Guyana, then the "council of churches" stopped and blocked this reform from happening in 2003 [67].
SurinameNo, age of consent 18 for same-sex activity, 16 for opposite-sex activity - Section 302 is rarely enforced [68]-NoNoNoSee LGBT rights in Suriname.
UruguayNo-Civil unionsYesCurrently being discussed by parliament.Civil union for all couples, after 5 years together. See LGBT rights in Uruguay.
VenezuelaNo-NoYesNoThe 1999 Organic labour Law provides protection for GLBT people. See LGBT rights in Venezuela.

See alsoEdit


  1. "Quiet pink revolution in dark before dawn?"
  2. Integrity USA reports Dr Nsaba Buturo, the Ugandan minister of Ethics and Integrity as stating in the 2006 case of Victor Mukasa (a 31-year-old gay rights activist) and Yvonne Ooyo that the plaintiffs "suffered under the false notion that homosexuality can be a human rights issue" [1]
  3. Homosexuality in India
  5. Pela 1ª vez, Justiça autoriza casal gay a adotar criança no Brasil (in Portuguese)

External linksEdit

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ca:Legislació sobre l'homosexualitat en el món cs:Zákony týkající se homosexuality cy:Deddfwriaeth ar gyfunrywioldeb yn ôl gwlades:Legislación sobre la homosexualidad en el mundo fr:Droits des personnes LGBT dans le monde it:Omosessualità e legge hu:LMBT-törvények listája pt:Direitos dos homossexuais pelo mundo sh:Prava LGBT osoba fi:Homoseksuaalisuus ja laki

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