Tanzania stops 40 health centres offering Aids services

The government has accused privately run clinics of promoting gay sex.

An HIV testing kit.
An HIV testing kit. PA

Tanzania's government has stopped 40 privately run health centres from providing AIDs-related services, accusing them of promoting gay sex in a country where it is punishable by up to 30 years in prison.

It is the latest move by the East African country to crack down on homosexuals.

The government believes that non-governmental organisations are using some health centres to promote gay sex, Health Minister Ummy Mwalimu said on Thursday as she announced the restrictions.

The news comes around six months after the government threatened to de-register pro-gay civic groups it said were harmful to the "culture of Tanzanians", while in September, the government temporarily suspended HIV and AIDs outreach projects targeting gay men.

During Thursday's speech Ms Mwalimu also announced the government was expanding HIV and AIDs services at 3,000 other health centres across the country.

The HIV rate among gay men in Tanzania stands at 30% according to government figures.

According to Amnesty International around two-thirds of African countries criminalise consensual same-sex sexual conduct.

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