Now Reading
Number of nations with laws against gay sex falls to 66

Number of nations with laws against gay sex falls to 66

African island nation of Mauritius is the latest country to overturn its anti-gay law


CLICK to receive an email notice of each new Erasing 76 Crimes article


Map of the 67 countries where sexual relations between people of the same sex are illegal. YELLOW countries have sodomy laws that are currently being challenged before local courts. Sri Lanka, in PINK, currently has a bill before its parliament to repeal its sodomy law. Indonesia, in ORANGE, has laws that criminalize homosexuality only in some subnational jurisdictions. All states in RED have nationwide sodomy laws and no known efforts to remove them. 
Map of the 66 countries where sexual relations between people of the same sex are illegal. YELLOW countries have sodomy laws that are currently being challenged before local courts. Sri Lanka, in PINK, currently has a bill before its parliament to repeal its sodomy law. Indonesia, in ORANGE, has laws that criminalize homosexuality only in some subnational jurisdictions. All states in RED have nationwide sodomy laws and no known legislative efforts or court challenges to remove them. 

The number of nations with laws against gay sex has fallen to 66, continuing the slow, decades-long progress toward recognition of the human rights of LGBTQ+ people.

The latest country to drop its anti-LGBT law is the African island nation of Mauritius in the Indian Ocean east of Madagascar. On Oct. 4, its Supreme Court overturned a law against consensual sexual intercourse between men, declaring it discriminatory and unconstitutional.

This site’s list of nations with anti-homosexuality laws now total 66, which is one more than a similar list maintained by the Human Dignity Trust. The trust’s list excludes the tiny South Pacific island nation of Niue, which we include. For a discussion of the status of Niue, see the article “2022 in worldwide LGBT rights progress – Part 3: Africa and Oceania”.

Before Mauritius, the latest countries to end the criminalization of same-sex intimacy have been the Cook Islands in the South Pacific in April 2023, following in the footsteps of Singapore in Southeast Asia, Antigua & Barbuda, Saint Kitts & Nevis, and Barbados in the Caribbean — all in 2022.

Back in 2006, a total of 92 nations considered homosexual activity a crime, according to ILGA, the the International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Intersex Association.

See Also
A Youth Day parade in 2015 in Cameroon. (Photo courtesy of achelchaikof.com)

Other nations that have recently decriminalized same-sex intercourse include Bhutan in the Himalayas (2021), Gabon in central Africa (2020) and Botswana in southern Africa (2019).

In contrast, the justice minister of the violence-plagued West African nation of Mali said this year that he will push for a law criminalizing homosexuality.

For more information, see the Erasing 76 Crimes page “List of 66 countries where homosexuality is illegal.” There you will find:

  • A full list of nations with anti-homosexuality laws.
  • Recent history of many nations repealing or overturning those laws and a few nations newly adopting them.
  • A comparison of this site’s list with the similar list compiled by ILGA, the International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Intersex Association.
View Comments (0)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

© 2022 ERASING 76CRIMES
Scroll To Top

Discover more from Erasing 76 Crimes

Subscribe now to keep reading and get access to the full archive.

Continue reading