Thursday, January 27, 2011



Brussels, January 26, 2011 -- ILGA the International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual,
Trans and Intersex association is appalled and shocked by the murder of gay
rights activist David Kato in Uganda on Wednesday. Kato?s body was found by
neighbors in his house in Kampala on Wednesday hacked on the head with a
hammer. From Mexico-city ILGA?s co-secretary-general, Gloria Careaga issued
a forceful demand to Uganda?s authorities, to stop the persecution and
violence against LGBTI people and to thoroughly and promptly investigate
?this hideous crime?. ?We demand justice and respect. Our international work
is based on the phrase ?Nobody is safe until everybody is safe?, Careaga

Kato?s murder comes only weeks after the Uganda Supreme Court told the local
magazine ?Rolling Stones? to stop publishing names of prominent Ugandan
alleged homosexuals and calling for them to be hanged. It now seems someone
apparently took up the magazine?s call and David Kato, who was out already
as gay man and LGBTI activist has become the first lethal victim of the
magazine?s hate call. Careaga: ?First we need to mourn David and celebrate
his life and legacy, while giving comfort and support to his family, friends
and fellow-activists in Uganda and all over the world. But then we will have
to ensure that his death proves that the wave of hate towards LGBTI people
in Africa and particularly in Uganda must be stopped and turned around". She
quoted a statement of Kato in an interview by the New Internationalist
Magazine last year: ?I can?t run away and leave the people I am protecting.
People might die, but me, I will be the last one to run out of here?. ?David
Kato did not run, and he died. We cannot leave his work undone? Gloria
Careaga stressed.

David Kato visited the ILGA?s headquarter in Brussels as recently as march
last year on a tour of European institutions and governments to boost
support against the Ugandan law proposal aiming to make homosexuality
punishable by death. Kato has been arrested three times for his activism and
faced innumerable other forms of harassment and assault. A long-time
activist, Kato had earned the title of ?grandfather of the kuchus? ? as gay
men in Kampala call themselves ? for his work on behalf of people in the
LGBT community. In the past he has sheltered many people in his home,
visited them in prison and worked for their release. He worked as the
advocacy and litigation officer for SMUT, Sexual Minorities Uganda, Uganda?s
main LGBTI Rights group. David Kato?s murder ironically comes on the same
day that United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki Moon made the strongest
call ever by the UN for an end to human rights violations based on sexual
orientation and gender identity.

Mario Kleinmoedig

ILGA Press Officer

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