Liberia’s president and Tony Blair discuss anti-gay law

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Nobel peace prize winner defends law criminalising homosexuality in Liberia

Exclusive: In joint interview, Tony Blair refuses to comment on Liberian president’s remarks supporting anti-gay laws

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Tamasin Ford and Bonnie Allen in Monrovia, Monday 19 March 2012 12.36 GMT
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Liberia’s president and Tony Blair discuss anti-gay law. Link to this video

The Nobel peace prize winner and president of Liberia, Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, has defended a law that criminalises homosexual acts, saying: “We like ourselves just the way we are.”

In a joint interview with Tony Blair, who was left looking visibly uncomfortable by her remarks, Sirleaf told the Guardian: “We’ve got certain traditional values in our society that we would like to preserve.”

Liberian legislation classes “voluntary sodomy” as a misdemeanour punishable by up to one year in prison, but two new bills have been proposed that would target homosexuality with much tougher sentences.

Blair, on a visit to Liberia in his capacity as the founder of the Africa Governance Initiative (AGI), a charity that aims to strengthen African governments, refused to comment on Sirleaf’s remarks.

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28 Responses

  1. Jeff Carter says:

    Homos are the most disgusting perverse people and are born of pedophilia.

  2. gareth griffiths says:

    Blair is a toilet trader and was arrested for cottaging in the 1970s

  3. Ricardo Herrera says:

    How this women could win a Nobel Price? Thats why her country is in the shit. She is a woman and she knows the struggle and she is acting as her opressors, the woman should loose that price.

  4. 19coyote80 says:

    There is no such thing as a "gay" or "lesbian" person, it's simply men who enjoy to be sodomised and women who enjoy eating vagina. That's all. It's a state of being not an identity.

  5. Steve Steves says:

    "Africa Governance Initiative" sounds just as arrogant and self-righteous as AFRICOM. Westerners talk about "human-rights" as if they are the word of god and not just some words written by (predominantly) white, wealthy, privileged people. Like George Carlin said, real human-rights would be the right to a roof over your head, or the right to some food and water everyday. How about the right not to be demonised for the laws and traditions of your country? (I don't necessarily think its right to criminalise homosexuality, but its not our place as a group/tribe to intervene in, or ostracise anyone else's group/tribe, especially when we can't even sort out our own injustices).  Bit of a late comment but fuck it.

  6. Stars shinebrite says:

    Damn, i dont get this new generation trying to force this Gay & Lesbian LGBT movement on everyone. Of you dont like the way other cultures handle it, move to san Francisco. Not everyone cares for it or has respect for those people, get over it

  7. Steven Anny says:

    She certainly bailed Blair out of the furnace there. God forbid he declares his stance on gay rights!

  8. Milton Laene Araujo says:

    Dumb and dumber

  9. lion head says:


  10. Bill Grimke-Drayton says:

    What a blatant coward Tony Blair is!

  11. cpimentel369 says:

    Because people die on this issue every day. Murder, you see, is not for the back burner.

  12. Mr. Jonisaurus says:

    Fuck off you piece of shit. Every Western country should directly connect ANY humanitarian aid, any foreign aid, to the acceptance of human rights which very clearly include the rights of gay people.

  13. Mr. Jonisaurus says:

    How very cowardly of Tony Blair, and how very bigoted and anti-humane of this woman.

  14. Luzitanium says:

    well let me tell you that are some tribes in africa do some rituals about males doing sex….your post seems from a very confused person
    Of course the paedophiles born with it, the attraction to something cames from each one feelings its not imposed, but paedophiles is a crime because envolves children which dont have full conscience of sexuality, now homossexuality envolves adults people like straight people, its all the same – attraction and feelings about a adult person (male or female).

  15. Peewee Lien says:

    I never said I don't accept racism. I've lived with it all these years, so at the end I just don't give a damn about it.Homosexuality and paedophilia acts was used through greek and roman ancient time.There are no facts that tells a specific african tribe or culture that had homosexuality as part of their way of life, before the europeans came to the continent.Are paedophiles born with their behaviour too?Or africans would be told in the future that it is a normal lifestyle, and a human rights

  16. Luzitanium says:

    yeah I will never be in a higher position of ignorance like her. Thank god

  17. Luzitanium says:

    the same way you and I dont accept racism,and dont say homossexuality is western culture that shows how ignorant you are on the matter,homossexuality always existed anywhere in the world,of course there is more important problems there was also more important matters than when blacks started to have rights and that was accepted with time with so much fights.You say west is imposing homossexuality?how?when homossexuals born with that,you are imposing them to not be gay.How hilarious your post was

  18. Peewee Lien says:

    Why is it so hard for europeans to respect africans view on this matter? Over 90% of africans says NO to homosexuality being a part of their cultures, traditions and moral values. I'm liberian that have lived in Europe over 20 years and don't give a damn if a white man like me or not. I respect the laws, traditions and cultures values of the country I live in, but disagree on how the west wants to impose homosexuality on africans.There are more important problems in Africa than gay rights.

  19. Lampy Pampy says:


    Finally hey, keep your primitive/outdated traditions man/woman don't let me interrupt you.

  20. Lampy Pampy says:

    The short answer is nothing!!! But that strawman question wasn't my point either!!! The crux of my argument is that the more you guys hold on to these primitive/outdated traditions whether it's against homosexuality or beliefs in gods..the more it will hamper your ability to think rationally and pave the way in your brains, to help develop your scientific capabilities!!!

  21. thehararean says:

    Really!!!! what is so advanced ,scientific and new about homosexuality. It has always been there and people have always found it to be gross and unpalatable hence us loving our morals just as they are. If you like that sought of behaviour or sleep with dead bodies in the name of being advanced and unsuperstitious that's up to you but don't force it down everyone's throat.

  22. Lampy Pampy says:

    ….like that you'll always be easy defenseless exploitative prey for western powers!!!

  23. Lampy Pampy says:

    and be better equiped with your own developped scientific technology to face down the west by being in a stronger position to defend yourselves both economically and militarily, you guys prefer to remain scientifically ignorant!!! You know what? Go ahead, keep your backward outdated traditions!!! The western power must be enjoying this, having to deal with a bunch of backward underdevelopped people who likes clinging to old superstitious outdated traditions……

  24. Lampy Pampy says:

    I guess that reinforces my point then!!! Hence the backwardness!!! Everywhere else is advancing and developping and you guys "like the way you are" which would be tantamount to saying "we like the way we are, clinging to outdated moral values and primitive superstitious traditions!!! And you wonder why the West keeps exploiting the continent, that would be because of instead of shedding themselves of outdated moral values and primitive superstitious traditions, and rather embrace science……

  25. thehararean says:

    we like ourselves just the way we are

  26. thehararean says:

    we like ourselves just the way we are.

  27. Luzitanium says:

    well between a higher position speaking like a moron and belonging to a middle class speaking with knowledge, i think i prefer the second.

  28. Beautiful Liberia says:

    Yea and she's in a higher position then you will ever be in your entire life… Go kick rocks!!

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