(Nairobi) – A Kenyan court will hear a constitutional petition challenging the use of forced anal examinations of men accused of homosexuality on May 4, 2016, Human Rights Watch said today. Under international law, forced anal examinations are a form of cruel, inhuman, and degrading treatment that may amount to torture.
In the case before the Mombasa high court, the two petitioners, both male adults identified in the petition only as C.O.I. and G.M.N., state that doctors at Mombasa’s Coast General Provincial Hospital (also known as Madaraka Hospital), in collaboration with law enforcement officials, violated their rights by subjecting them to forced anal examinations, HIV tests, and other blood tests in February 2015, while they were in police custody on charges related to alleged homosexual conduct. Anal examinations are a discredited, 19th century method used by law enforcement officials to attempt to “prove” homosexuality in several countries around the world, Human Rights Watch said.
“Anal examinations prove nothing, and they accomplish nothing, other than humiliating and demeaning people who are considered moral ‘outcasts,’” said Neela Ghoshal, senior researcher on lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) rights at Human Rights Watch. “It’s frankly shocking to see such archaic methods used in Kenya in the 21st century.”