11 Muslim men to be tried in Nigeria for homosexuality

Jan. 16, 2014 at 8:15 AM
| License Photo

BAUCHI, Nigeria, Jan. 16 (UPI) -- An Islamic court in Nigeria is trying 11 Muslim men, who face death by stoning for allegedly having same-sex relationships, a religious leader said.

It is illegal to have gay sex in Nigeria both under Sharia -- or Islamic -- and secular law.

President Goodluck Jonathan signed the Same-Sex Marriage Prohibition Act, tightening laws against same-sex marriages, gay groups and shows of same-sex public affection earlier this month.

Under Sharia law, those convicted of homosexuality can be stoned to death.

A 12th person -- a Christian -- is being tried under secular law.

"What this act is saying is that they [gay people] do not deserve to exist," Dorothy Aken-Ova, a human rights activist, told the BBC.

Jibrin Danlami Hassan, a commissioner of Bauchi state's Sharia Commission, said the accused were arrested by residents of Bauchi.

"They accept that they are doing that dirty game," he said of the accused.

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