Anti-gay Robert Mugabe appointed chair of African Union
The President of Zimbabwe Robert Mugabe, who is a staunch opponent of gay rights, has been appointed as the president of the African Union.
Mugabe, 90, is known for denouncing homosexuality, and calling for gay men to be put to death.
He has been selected as the AU chairman for the coming year.
Mugabe, who has been president of Zimbabwe since 1980, is subject to travel bans imposed by the EU and US.
In his speech, which drew applause, he said African countries should value relationships with “friends”, but that “colonialists and imperialists” were not welcome on the continent.
Mugabe last year threatened to expel any diplomats who mention homosexuality in Zimbabwe, at a speech after his daughter’s wedding reception.
He said at the time: “Let Europe keep their homosexual nonsense there and live with it. We will never have it here. The act [homosexuality] is not humane.
“Any diplomat who talks about homosexuality will be kicked out. There is no excuse and we won’t listen to them.”
Homosexuality is illegal in Zimbabwe and Mugabe has been a staunch promoter of homophobic persecution since he became President in 1987.