Iranian president accuses West of using homosexuality to ‘end the generation of human beings’

Ebrahim Raisi blasts West for “promoting homosexuality” during visit to Uganda.

By The Associated Press

Iran’s president on a rare visit to Africa on Wednesday sharply criticized Western nations’ support for homosexuality as one of the “dirtiest” episodes of human history.

President Ebrahim Raisi spoke in Uganda, which recently passed legislation prescribing the death penalty for “aggravated homosexuality,” to widespread international condemnation.

“I believe that this issue, and these strong attacks by the West against the establishment of families and against the culture of the nations, is another area of cooperation for Iran and Uganda,” Raisi said after a private meeting with Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni.

“The West today is trying to promote the idea of homosexuality and by promoting homosexuality they are trying to end the generation of human beings,” Raisi said.

“The Western countries try to identify homosexuality as an index of civilization, while this is one of the dirtiest things which have been done in human history.”

The African visit is the first by an Iranian leader in more than a decade as the country, which is under heavy U.S. economic sanctions, seeks more partnerships around the world. Raisi is also visiting Zimbabwe.

By emphasizing conservatism and anti-colonialism in his Uganda remarks, he appeared ready to bond with African countries on more than purely economic grounds.

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At his first stop in Kenya, Iran’s leader called Africa a “continent of opportunities” and a great platform for Iranian products. “None of us is satisfied with the current volume of trade,” he said.

Raisi specifically mentioned Africa’s mineral resources and Iran’s petrochemical experience, but the memoranda of understanding signed by Iran and Kenya appeared not to address either one. Instead, they focused on information, communication and technology; fisheries; animal health and livestock production and investment promotion.

Raisi’s Africa visit is meant to “promote economic diplomacy, strengthen political relations with friendly and aligned countries, and diversify the export destinations,” Iran’s foreign ministry said in a statement.

Last month, Iran’s leader made his first visit to Latin America, stopping in Venezuela, Cuba and Nicaragua. In March, Iran and Saudi Arabia agreed to re-establish diplomatic ties in a major diplomatic breakthrough.

Iran is in a growing standoff with Western nations over its nuclear program, which has made major advances in the five years since then-U.S. President Donald Trump withdrew his country from an international agreement that restricted it. Trump also restored sanctions on Iran that have contributed to a severe economic crisis.