Gambia 2018 Report on – Transitional Justice, Rights Of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Intersex People, Sexual and Reproductive Rights

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Transitional Justice – Ten soldiers were arrested and detained in January, accused of involvement in enforced disappearances and killings, but were not charged and remained in detention at the end of the year.

In February, criminal proceedings began against nine NIA officers, including the
former director, accused of murdering opposition activist Solo Sandeng in April
2016. In October, victims of human rights abuses, civil society organizations and international human rights groups formed a coalition to campaign for Yahya Jammeh and others who Amnesty International Report 2017/18 171 committed serious human rights abuses during his rule to be brought to justice. Ousmane Sonko, Minister of Interior from 2006 until he fled the country in September 2016, faced investigation in Switzerland for crimes against humanity committed during
President Jammeh’s rule.

On 13 December, the Truth, Reconciliation and Reparation Commission (TRRC) bill to examine events during President Jammeh’s rule, was passed by the National Assembly,
following consultation on the bill with national and international actors.

On 10 August, a Commission of Inquiry was set up to investigate Yahya Jammeh’s alleged
mismanagement of public finances and abuse of office. The government also froze assets believed to belong to him.

A Panel on Missing Persons, a specialized police unit investigating enforced
disappearances during President Jammeh’s rule, was created in February. In March, the
bodies of four people, possible victims of enforced disappearance, were exhumed, including that of Solo Sandeng. It is expected to submit the list of missing people to be investigated by the TRRC.

Rights Of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Intersex People – Same-sex relations remained criminalized. A law approved in October 2014, for example, imposed sentences of up to life imprisonment for “aggravated homosexuality” offences.

LGBTI people continued to suffer discrimination and threats from non-state
actors.

Sexual and Reproductive Rights – In November, the government and development partners launched the Comprehensive Sexuality Education programme to be delivered in schools. Despite laws criminalizing female genital mutilation (FGM), it remained widespread.

The government and development partners developed a communication strategy to further educate communities about the harms of FGM.

Abortion remained a criminal offence, except in cases where the pregnant woman’s life was at risk.

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