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LGBT Laws Around the World

Legally gay

Published: Sep 13, 2013 07:25:23 AM IST
Updated: Sep 10, 2013 12:06:24 PM IST
LGBT Laws Around the World
Image: Sameer Pawar

Russia’s recent crackdown on homosexuality has sparked protests, with some even proposing a boycott of the 2014 Winter Olympics scheduled to be held there. But Russia is not alone in its stand.


In June, the Supreme Court pulled down the Defense of Marriage Act, which barred the federal government from recognising gay marriages even in states where such unions were legal.

A new law penalises “propaganda of non-traditional sexual relations among minors” with fines up to a million roubles. The country bans adoption of orphans by gay couples.

It may become the first Asian country to legalise same-sex partnerships by next year.

The Netherlands
It was the world’s first country to legalise gay marriages in 2001. Capital Amsterdam hosts the annual gay pride in August.

In 2009, the Delhi High Court decriminalised homosexuality. In 2012, the Supreme Court’s move to decriminalise gay sex met with political opposition.

One of Africa’s most hostile countries for sexual minorities. Eric Ohena Lembembe, the country’s most prominent gay rights activist, was tortured and murdered in July.


Same-sex couples are coming out and expressing themselves in cities like Yangon and Mandalay, although gay marriages stay illegal.

Homosexuality is punishable by 31 to 74 lashes.

(This story appears in the 20 September, 2013 issue of Forbes India. To visit our Archives, click here.)