Senegalese President Macky Sall said on Wednesday that the ban on homosexuality in Senegal resulted from the cultural specificity of his country and has "nothing to do" with homophobia.
Sall's statements were made during a joint press conference with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, who raised the issue "briefly" with the Senegalese leader.
Sall confirmed that the issue had been addressed in their talks. "Only that the laws of our country obey rules that are the condensation of our values of culture and civilization", he said. "This has nothing to do with homophobia," he added.
"I am always defending human rights and always talk about these issues wherever I go," said Trudeau. "President Macky Sall is very familiar with my perspectives on the subject, about which we spoke briefly," he added. On the other hand, he considered Senegal “a leader in terms of democracy, in terms of values”.
Trudeau is promoting his country's candidacy for a non-permanent seat on the United Nations Security Council. The votes of African countries are precious for this purpose. Before arriving in Senegal on Monday, Trudeau was in Ethiopia on the occasion of an African Union summit. The Senegalese President expressed support.
During his stay in Senegal, Trudeau addressed the issues of inclusion of women and girls, including participation in peacekeeping missions, the situation in the Sahel, trade, development aid and the climate crisis.