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Botswana High Court rules laws criminalizing homosexuality are unconstitutional

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Botswana’s High Court has rejected sections of the penal code that criminalize same-sex relations and impose up to seven years in prison.

Tuesday’s unanimous ruling in the southern African nation calls the sections unconstitutional.

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It comes less than a month after Kenya’s High Court upheld similar sections of the penal code in another closely watched case.

More than two dozen countries in sub-Saharan Africa have laws criminalizing gay sex.

Those arguing against the laws say they leave people in the LGBT community vulnerable to discrimination and abuse while making it difficult to access basic health and other services.

The Botswana-based non-governmental group LEGABIBO says such laws “infringe on basic human dignity.”

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Early this year the southern African nation of Angola decriminalized same-sex activity and banned discrimination based on sexual orientation.

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Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. Like you, we here at Raw Story believe in the power of progressive journalism — and we’re investing in investigative reporting as other publications give it the ax. Raw Story readers power David Cay Johnston’s DCReport, which we've expanded to keep watch in Washington. We’ve exposed billionaire tax evasion and uncovered White House efforts to poison our water. We’ve revealed financial scams that prey on veterans, and efforts to harm workers exploited by abusive bosses. We’ve launched a weekly podcast, “We’ve Got Issues,” focused on issues, not tweets. Unlike other news sites, we’ve decided to make our original content free. But we need your support to do what we do.

Raw Story is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. We’re not part of a conglomerate, or a project of venture capital bros. From unflinching coverage of racism, to revealing efforts to erode our rights, Raw Story will continue to expose hypocrisy and harm. Unhinged from corporate overlords, we fight to ensure no one is forgotten.

We need your support to keep producing quality journalism and deepen our investigative reporting. Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. Invest with us in the future. Make a one-time contribution to Raw Story Investigates, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you.



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G7 off to a rough start as Trump aides slam host Macron’s agenda

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With President Donald Trump at the latest G7 summit, all eyes are on the interactions between him and French President Emmanuel Macron. The two world leaders started off amicably, exchanging pleasantries, but behind the scenes, things have grown contentious.

According to Politico, Trump officials are railing against Macron, accusing him of trying to "fracture" the summit by steering the negotiations away from trade and into areas like climate change.

This development comes after Trump harshly criticized Macron for enacting a tax on digital services, which could increase costs for American tech companies like Google and Facebook. Trump threatened that if France does not suspend its "unfair" digital tax, "we'll be taxing their wine like they've never seen before." It is a threat that Trump has made repeatedly over the last few weeks whenever he has gotten angry at France.

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Stolen Macron portraits to reappear at G7 protest new messages

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Green activists will march through the town of Bayonne in the southwest of France on Sunday on the margins of the G7 summit, carrying stolen portraits of French President Emmanuel Macron. But what’s behind one of the G7’s more unusual protests?

As world leaders gather in Biarritz in the French Basque country this weekend for the annual G7 summit, a few miles away in Bayonne French citizens will be marching through the streets, proudly carrying aloft photos of their country’s leader.

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Hundreds of new fires in Brazil as Amazon outrage grows

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Hundreds of new fires are raging in the Amazon rainforest in northern Brazil, official data showed Saturday, amid growing international pressure on President Jair Bolsonaro to put out the worst blazes in years.

The fires in the world's largest rainforest have triggered a global outcry and are dominating the G7 meeting in Biarritz in southern France.

Official figures show 78,383 forest fires were recorded in Brazil so far this year, the highest number of any year since 2013, and experts say the clearing of land during the months-long dry season to make way for crops or grazing has accelerated the deforestation.

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