Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has pledged to change the law to equalise the age of consent for anal sex.
At present in Canada, the federal age of consent is 16 – but for anal intercourse outside of marriage, the age of consent is 18.
Canada also still technically criminalises anal intercourse if more than two people are present, unlike other forms of sexual activity where no such restriction applies.
The law affects couples both straight and gay, however indirectly discriminates against same-sex couples, as a gay male couple cannot have vaginal sex.
But in an interview with Canadian LGBT outlet Daily Xtra, Canadian PM Justin Trudeau said it was already being reviewed and he would change the law soon to eliminate the inequality.
Mr Trudeau, a strong supporter of LGBT rights who came to power last year, promised: “Yes. That’s something we very much look forward to moving on in short order.”
Elsewhere, he promised to put LGBT rights at the heart of Canada’s global diplomacy and foreign policy – saying that he was already “very outspoken” and had raised LGBT equality at the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in Malta earlier this year.
He told the outlet: “When I was at the Commonwealth heads of government meeting in Malta just a number of months ago, I brought up LGBT rights around the table.
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“I am very outspoken about human rights, about respecting people’s fundamental rights including, and especially, LGBT rights.”
He added: “I’m going to continue to be present, to be outspoken and to bring it up anytime we’re talking about development aid or economic growth or opportunities.
“The cost for countries of wanting to engage with Canada is going to be receive pressure that they do have changes to make.
“I recently just had a sit-down with our heads of mission, our ambassadors from around the world, and emphasised that part of their job was going to be, to be outspoken on Canadian values and the fundamental human rights that we stand for.
“It’s not just the head of government, it’s all of our representatives, challenging our representatives to look for ways not just to put pressure on the individual governments, but to be active on social media, to talk to civil society, to get out and engage with the communities in a way that is diplomatically respectful.”
He also promised to enact a law that in some way pardons men convicted under historic gay sex laws.
Addressing Canada’s history of criminalising homosexuality, he said: “We need to make sure that as a country we’re living up to our values and making sure we acknowledge where we went wrong in the past so that we never do again.
“We do need to recognise the terrible mistakes made in the past that we need to make sure we learn from, that we reflect on and that we make amends for.
“And however that comes and whatever form that takes will be something that we’ll have to reflect on, and discuss on and exchange on.”