The European Union’s representative in Liberia, Laurent Delahousse, has called on the authorities here to “take immediate action to issue an executive order” banning female genital mutilation and other harmful traditional practices.
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Speaking at a human rights forum, the EU envoy also asked the government to relax laws that he said suppressed civil liberties such as a ban on same-sex marriages.
He said “the penal code of Liberia continues to criminalise” consensual sexual relationships by same-sex couples, something he argued violates international laws protecting the social rights of LGBT individuals.
There has been no reaction from the Liberian authorities but sodomy is a crime under the law.
Governments coming to power in Liberia have always avoided tackling deep-rooted traditional practices such as FGM for fear of getting into a confrontation with rural populations involved in those practices.