The president of Zambia issued an official complaint to the United States over remarks its ambassador made after a homosexual couple were jailed for 15 years in the African country.
The U.S. ambassador to Zambia, Daniel Foote, said in a statement he was “personally horrified” to read about the sentencing of Japhet Chataba and Steven Samba last week. However he also complained about corruption in Zambia.
According to Daily Beast: Speaking to Sky News, Zambian President Edgar Lungu warned of a breakdown in relations between Zambia and the U.S. unless the remarks were withdrawn.
Lungu told the network: “We are saying no to homosexuality. Why should we say we are going to be civilized if we allow it… are you saying that we’re very primitive now because we’re frowning on homosexuality? Even animals don’t do it, so why should we be forced to do it?… Because we want to be seen to be smart, civilized, and advanced and so on.”
The State Department is now recalling ambassador Foote after the country's president objected to the ambassador's harsh criticism of the government’s record on gay rights and corruption.
This rare and extraordinary move indicates a vast change in American strength of values abroad as we acquiesce to complaints of this nature.
"I could never have imagined such a shameful weakness on the part of the USA . With a Trump administration we can no longer rely on the consistent support of the United States government to prop up and support basic human rights. This trajectory is dangerous for our LGBTQI family abroad and has significant repercussions everywhere." MELANIE NATHAN, AFRICAN HRC.