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Hotels turn away Uganda president amid threats to protest Dallas visit

Hotels turn away Uganda president amid threats to protest Dallas visit

DALLAS — At least two Texas hotels have turned away Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni, over planned protests due to his country’s anti-gay laws.

Yoweri Museveni
Yoweri Museveni

The Dallas Voice reports that the Four Seasons Hotel in Irving canceled Museveni’s reservation, and that Marriott’s Gaylord Texan hotel in Grapevine refused to host Museveni as well.

Museveni is visiting Dallas this weekend to promote tourism and look for investors in his country’s oil and gas industry, according to the Dallas Voice, which notes that ExxonMobil’s world headquarters are nearby.

The Voice reported that “several members of the Ugandan community asked members of the LGBT community to join them protesting Museveni and the genocide he has repeatedly threatened to unleash on the gay community.”

Late Thursday, Diana Pfaff of the Irving Convention Center told the Dallas Voice that the Ugandan Embassy had until the close of business to get all paperwork back to them, but because embassy officials did not meet that deadline, the event featuring Museveni will not take place Sunday in Irving as originally planned.

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In December 2013, Uganda’s parliament passed the “Anti-Homosexuality Act,” a law that provided jail terms up to life for those convicted of engaging in gay sex. It also allowed lengthy jail terms for those convicted of the offenses of “attempted homosexuality” as well as “promotion of homosexuality.”

The measure, signed by Museveni in February, was struck down last month by panel of five judges on the East African country’s Constitutional Court because it was passed during a parliamentary session that lacked a quorum.

Despite the court’s ruling, a colonial-era law that criminalizes sex acts “against the order of nature” still remains in effect in Uganda, allowing for the continued arrests of alleged homosexual “offenders.”

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