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Censorship of LGBT issues is practised by some countries around the world. They may take a variety of forms, including anti-LGBT curriculum laws in some states of the United States,[1] the Russian gay propaganda law (on "promotion of non-traditional sexual relationships"), and the Hungarian anti-LGBT law (on "content portraying or promoting sex reassignment or homosexuality"), and laws in Muslim-majority states such as Afghanistan, Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, and Malaysia prohibiting advocacy that offends Islamic morality.[2]

Current laws


On 21 November 2021, Afghanistan's Ministry for the Propagation of Virtue and the Prevention of Vice promulgated an order prohibiting TV channels from broadcasting media that are against the Taliban's interpretation of Sharia and Afghan culture.[3]


Main article: LGBT rights in Algeria § Living conditions

Article 333 bis of the Penal Code, as amended on 13 February 1982 by Law n° 82-04, criminalizes the distribution of anything against "decency" with up to 2 years in prison and a fine up to 2,000 dinars.[4] Article 333, also amended in 1982, criminalizes indecent exposure of any "act against the order of nature with an individual of the same sex" with up to 3 years in prison and a fine up to 10,000 dinars.[4]

Brazil (sub-national)

Since 2014, at least 217 bills have been introduced at the federal, state, and municipal levels in Brazil to ban teaching "gender ideology", "information on sexual orientation", "information on sexual diversity", "orienting the sexuality of students" and "ideological indoctrination" in Brazilian schools. At least 47 of these bills were passed into law, but many of them were struck down by the courts. As of 2022, 21 laws, including 1 on state level and 20 on municipal level, remain in force.[5]


Main article: LGBT rights in China § Freedom of expression and censorship

On 31 December 2015, the State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film and Television (SARFT) of the People's Republic of China announced a new rule that banned any television show and film depicting "unnormal sexual relationships", including homosexuality.[6][7] As a result of this new rule, many popular web television series at the time like Addicted and Go Princess Go were immediately pulled from broadcasting. Online streaming services including LeTV and Tencent Video followed the new rule by deleting or censoring web series with LGBT characters.[8]

In 2017, an LGBT conference was scheduled to be held in Xi'an. Western reports, using the organisers blog as their source, claimed the police had detained the organisers and threatened them.[9][10][11]

In March 2018, Oscar-winning drama Call Me By Your Name has been pulled from the Beijing International Film Festival's lineup.[12] It was widely speculated that the organizer of this festival was under political pressure to not show the film.

On 14 April 2018, Sina Weibo, the equivalent of Twitter in China, announced a crackdown on LGBT content, as pursuant to the China Internet Security Law and other government regulations.[13]

In May 2018, the European Broadcasting Union blocked Mango TV, one of China's most watched channels, from airing the final of the Eurovision Song Contest 2018 after it edited out Irish singer Ryan O'Shaughnessy's performance, which depicted two male dancers, and blacked out rainbow flags during Switzerland's performance.[14]

Days before the International Day Against Homophobia in 2018, two women wearing rainbow badges were attacked and beaten by security guards in Beijing. The security company dismissed the three guards involved shortly thereafter.[15]

Mr. Gay China, a beauty pageant, was held in 2016 without incident.[16] In 2018, the event host passively cancelled their engagement by not responding to any communications. Mr Gay World 2019 announced the cancellation of the Hong Kong event after communication began to deteriorate in early August. No official censorship notice was issued but some articles blamed the Chinese Government for the cancellation.[17] That same year, a woman who wrote a gay-themed novel was sentenced to 10 years and 6 months in prison for "breaking obscenity laws".[18]


Main articles: LGBT rights in Hungary § Freedom of speech and expression, and Hungarian anti-LGBT law

In June 2021, the government of Hungary introduced a bill prohibiting the showing of "any content portraying or promoting sex reassignment or homosexuality" to minors, similar to the Russian gay propaganda law.[19] On 15 June, the National Assembly approved the law by a vote of 157–1.[20] The President of Hungary signed the bill into law on 23 June.[21]


Main article: LGBT rights in Indonesia § Media

On 23 February 2016, the Indonesian Broadcasting Commission (KPI) released the "Circular to All Broadcasting Companies on Effeminate Men", banning the portrayal of sexual and gender diversity in men by the broadcasting companies.[22] In the same month, the KPI also banned TV and radio programs that "promoted homosexual lifestyle" claiming that they constituted a violation of the 2012 Broadcasting Program Standards.[23]


Iran has extensive public morality law which is used against newspapers and websites with the content related to the sexual orientation. Article 6 of the 1986 Press Law bans press which "undermines Islam's bases and commandments", including the spread of "fornication and forbidden practices" and "publishing photographs, pictures, and material which violate public chastity". The violation of this provision is punished under the Article 698 of the Islamic Penal Code with imprisonment of between two months to two years and flogging of up to 74 lashes. Article 14 of the 2009 Law on Computer Crimes (Law No. 71063) punishes with imprisonment and fines the use of computer systems, telecommunications systems or data carriers to publish or distribute "immoral content", or storage of such material "with the intention of corrupting society". Article 640 of the Penal Code bans public display, production or storage of "any writing or design, gravure, painting, picture, newspapers, advertisements, signs, film, cinema movie" which corrupts "public prudency and morality".[24]

Under these laws, operators of the website of Avizoon were arrested and charged with "pornography and publishing sexual ideas including homosexuality". The Ministry of Culture and Islamic Guidance, which enforces the press laws, bans any positive portrayals of homosexuality. Publishers are not allowed to obtain licences to publish such material since gay and lesbian acts are considered as corrupt and morally bankrupt.[25]

In 2002, a book entitled Witness Play by Cyrus Shamisa was banned from shelves (despite being initially approved) because it said that certain notable Persian writers were homosexuals and bisexuals.[26]

In 2004, the Tehran Museum of Contemporary Art loaned a collection of artwork that formerly belonged to Shah Mohammed Reza Pahlavi that had been locked away since the Revolution in 1979 to the Tate Britain. The artwork included explicit homoerotic artwork by Francis Bacon and the government in Iran stated that upon its return, it would also be put on display in Iran.[27]

In 2005, the Iranian Reformist paper Shargh was shut down by the government after it interviewed an Iranian author, living in Canada. While the interview never mentioned the sexual orientation of Saghi Ghahreman, it did quote her as stating that, "sexual boundaries must be flexible... The immoral is imposed by culture on the body".[28] The conservative paper Kayhan attacked the interview and the paper, "Shargh has interviewed this homosexual while aware of her sick sexual identity, dissident views and porno-personality."[28] To avoid being permanently shut down, the paper issued a public apology stating it was unaware of the author's "personal traits" and promised to "avoid such people and movements."[28]


LGBT issues could be censored in Iraq under extensive public morality law namely, paragraph 215, 220, 376, 401, 402, 403, 404 and 408 of the Iraqi Penal Code.

In August 2023, the Iraqi Communications and Media Commission issued the directive which banned media outlets from using the terms "homosexuality" and "gender". Instead, they must use the term "sexual deviance".[29]


Article 21 of the Press and Publications Law (Law No. 3) (2006) bans publishing content which is deemed as insulting to public morals.

A Disney movie The Beauty and the Beast has been baned in Kuwait for containing "an exclusively gay moment".


Main article: Kyrgyz anti-LGBT propaganda law

On 14 August 2023, Kyrgyz President Sadyr Japarov signed a law which banned promotion of non-traditional sexual relationships among minors.[30]


The Lebanese Penal Code contains many articles which are used against homosexuality, including Article 209, 521, 526, 531, 532, 533 and 534. Article 531 and 532 ban violating public morals by public actions, movements, speaking and screaming. Article 533 bans manufacturing, exporting, supplying, or acquiring "writings, drawings, manual or photographic images, suggestive films, or other indecent items with the intention to trade or distribute them, or announce or inform how to obtain them".

Several films have been banned in Lebanon for LGBT content.

In 2018, prosecutor of Beirut suspended the scheduled activities of Beirut Pride, and initiated criminal proceedings against its founder Hadi Damien for organizing events "that incite to debauchery".[31]


Main article: LGBT rights in Lithuania § Freedom of expression

On 16 June 2009, the Lithuanian Parliament approved an amendment to the Law on the Protection of Minors against the Detrimental Effects of Public Information (Lithuanian: Nepilnamečių apsaugos nuo neigiamo viešosios informacijos poveikio įstatymas), which would have effectively banned the "promotion of homosexual relations". The amendment was scheduled to go into effect on 1 March 2010.[32] Even though it was vetoed by the President citing "lack of definitions",[33] the veto was overturned by the Parliament. The wording of the law forbade the "propaganda of homosexual, bisexual or polygamous relations". According to some politicians who voted in favor, the possibility of defining "propaganda" should be left to lawyers.

On 17 September 2009, the European Parliament passed a resolution condemning the law and requesting the EU Fundamental Rights Agency issue a legal opinion on it.[34] On 10 November 2009, the Lithuanian Parliament (Seimas) answered by adopting a resolution requesting the Government to seek the invalidation of the EP Resolution, which it condemned as an unlawful act.[35][36] The EU Fundamental Rights Agency wrote to the European Parliament that it was not going to submit the requested legal opinion, given that it had no mandate to evaluate the legislation of member states.

Newly elected President Dalia Grybauskaitė expressed her strong disapproval of the law and formed a commission to elaborate a draft to repeal the discriminatory provisions. On 22 December 2009, the clauses banning the promotion among minors of "homosexual, bisexual, and polygamous relations" were eliminated, but as a compromise, the paragraph was replaced by a "ban to spread information that would promote sexual relations or other conceptions of concluding a marriage or creating a family other than established in the Constitution or the Civil Code".[37][38] It has been argued that this provision is the first step towards instituting a ban on criticizing the Government and its decisions and thus – a menace to democracy in the country.[39] Proponents of the law claimed to be led by a desire to protect traditional family and children, some of them have expressed an opinion that the law would ban any information in public about homosexuality, regardless of its accessibility to minors or ban any public discussions and LGBT-related events.[40][41] (So we propose to establish a limit that the promotion in public places is not possible to protect the mentioned three articles of the Constitution, but without doubt in some interior premisses those people have the right to organize events, to promote, to discuss) The new version was signed by the President, satisfied that "the homophobic provisions [had] been repealed".

Significantly, the same law forbids mocking and bullying on the grounds of sexual orientation. It also possesses a number of other amendments, such as prohibiting the promotion of unhealthy nutrition to minors, a ban on information that "profanes family values", the depiction of hypnosis, etc.

The amendment has been sometimes compared to Section 28, the act which prohibited discussion of homosexuality in British schools.[42]

Since coming into effect, there have been several attempts to apply the law. It has been unsuccessfully cited to ban the Gay Pride parade in 2010,[43] and in 2013,[44] and successfully referenced to declare one advertisement related to the Vilnius Gay Pride 2013 as appropriate to be broadcast at night time only and with the adult content logo.[45] The reason given by the Board of Experts of Journalism Ethics Inspector Service was that one person in the advertisement had a T-shirt with an inscription in Lithuanian "For the diversity of families". In their opinion, it encourages a different conception of family and marriage than established in Lithuanian laws.

In 2014, based on similar grounds, the same institution recommended restricting the distribution of a children's book of tales titled "Gintarinė širdis" ("Amber Heart") published by the Lithuanian University of Educational Sciences, because two stories in it were related to same-sex relationships. The Board ordered the book to be labelled "Not suitable for children under 14 years" and referring to this recommendation, the Ministry of Culture banned the book altogether.[46] The case have been escalated to the European Court of Human Rights in November 2019,[47] and was heard by the Grand Chamber on 23 March 2022.[48] In January 2023, the Court ruled that the government's actions were in violation of article 10, the right to freedom of expression, of the treaty.[49]

In 2014, a video clip of a gay rights organisation promoting tolerance towards LGBT people was refused to air by all major Lithuanian TV stations despite not having any overt sexuality-related content, fearing a potential breach of the Law on the Protection of Minors.[50] The breach was later unanimously confirmed by the Board of Experts of Journalism Ethics Inspector Service.[51]


Malaysia has laws which prohibit distributing, displaying or creating materials which are considered as "obscene" or "against public decency". Section 7(1) of the Printing Presses and Publications Act 1984 confers to Minister of Home Affairs absolute discretion to censor publications which are prejudicial to public order, morality, security, public or national interest, may "alarm public opinion" or are contrary to any law. This provision has been used to ban at least six LGBT-themed books.

Pro-LGBTQ+ demonstrations are banned as "insulting behaviour" and "contradictory to Islamic morality". Section 14 of the Minor Offences Act 1955, which prohibits "insulting behaviour", has been used against pro-LGBTQ+ protesters.[52]

In 2023, Malaysian authorities seized Pride-themed watches made by Swatch. Eleven shopping malls with Swatch outlets around Malaysia, including in the capital Kuala Lumpur, were raided in May.[52] Home Minister cited Printing Presses and Publications Act of 1984 and said that "the Malaysian government is committed to preventing the spread of elements that are harmful or may be harmful to morals".

In 2010, the Film Censorship Board of Malaysia announced it would only allow depiction of homosexual characters as long as the characters "repent" or die.[53][54] In 2017, Malaysia tried to censor Beauty and the Beast over some gay moments but eventually relented and let the movie be shown.[55][56] The censorship board also had no objections to the screening of Power Rangers even with a lesbian scene in the movie.[57][58]

Moldova (sub-national)

Since 2012, several cities have enacted bans on "propaganda" of homosexuality (which do not include any kind of administrative sanctions or fines). These cities are:

Similar bans were also enacted in the following districts:

Similar provisions were enacted by the following villages of Făleşti District:


On 30 April 2013, the Parliament of Gagauzia approved a bill to forbid the "propaganda" of homosexuality, bisexuality and transgenderism such as same-sex marriage and adoption by same-sex couples. The bill didn't include any kind of administrative sanctions or fines but some of its provisions banned any LGBT-related organizations from being registered in the region. Another provision was intended to ban any LGBT-related clubs and entertainment establishments. On 20 June 2013, these provisions were invalidated by a court decision, which held that these laws violated freedom of speech and human rights.

In May 2022, the People's Assembly of Gagauzia adopted a resolution banning "propaganda of non-traditional relations". The bill states that the "traditional family" is the basis of Gagauz society and bans local media from publishing anything that promotes same-sex couples. The Coalition for Inclusion and Non-discrimination has taken the resolution to the court, saying that it violates Moldova's constitution.[62]


Articles of the Publications and Publishing Law (1984) ban any publication which "calls people to embrace" or "promotes" anything against Islam, or might prejudice "public code of conduct" or "moral norms". The use of telecommunication services with information "contrary to the public order or morality", infringing "religious practice" or "promoting" anything against the law, is outlawed by the regulations passed under the Telecommunications Regulation Law (2002).

In 2013, The Week newspaper was shut down for one week after publishing article about Oman's LGBT community.


Pakistan Telecommunication Authority has authority to remove or block any content if it is "in the interest of the glory of Islam, public order, decency, or morality" under the Section 34 of the Prevention of Electronic Crimes Act (2016). The law has been used to ban LGB-related content online and in the media.


Main article: LGBT rights in Paraguay § School curriculum

On 5 October 2017, the Minister of Education and Science Enrique Riera signed Resolution N° 29664, which prohibits the use of printed and digital materials referring to "gender theory and/or ideology" in educational institutions.[63] Enrique Riera later said he would volunteer to "burn the books in a public square if they contained gender ideology".[64]


Main article: Russian gay propaganda law

In Russia, the Law for the Purpose of Protecting Children from Information Advocating for a Denial of Traditional Family Values was unanimously approved by the State Duma on 11 June 2013 (with just one MP abstaining—Ilya Ponomarev),[65] and was signed into law by President Vladimir Putin on 30 June 2013.[66]

The Russian government's stated purpose for the law is to prevent children from being exposed to homosexuality—content presenting homosexuality as being a norm in society—under the argument that it contradicts traditional family values. The statute amended the country's child protection law and the Code of the Russian Federation on Administrative Offenses, to make the distribution of "propaganda of non-traditional sexual relationships" among minors, an offence punishable by fines. This definition includes materials that "raises interest in" such relationships; cause minors to "form non-traditional sexual predispositions"; or "[present] distorted ideas about the equal social value of traditional and non-traditional sexual relationships." Businesses and organisations can also be forced to temporarily cease operations if convicted under the law, and foreigners may be arrested and detained for up to 15 days then deported, or fined up to 5,000 rubles and deported.

The Kremlin's backing of the law appealed to the Russian nationalist far-right, and also gained broad support among the Russian public and the Russian Orthodox Church, with 70% of Russians officially being Russian-Orthodox.[67] The law was condemned by the Venice Commission of the Council of Europe (of which Russia is a member), by the United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child and by human rights groups, such as Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch. The statute was criticised for its broad and ambiguous wording (including the broadly worded "raises interest in" and "among minors"), which critics described as an effective ban on publicly promoting the rights and culture of the LGBT community. The law was also condemned for leading to an increase in, and justification of, homophobic violence,[68] while the implications of the law in relation to the then-upcoming 2014 Winter Olympics being hosted by Sochi were also cause for concern, as the Olympic Charter contains language explicitly barring various forms of discrimination.

Saudi Arabia

The Saudi government censors the media with fines, imprisonment and, for foreigners, deportation for any person possessing, importing, distributing or producing media without governmental approval. Media content, including advertising, cannot be seen as insulting the royal family or conflicting with Islamic teachings and values.[69]

Radio and TV programs are banned from expressing support for LGBT rights, but homosexuality and cross-dressing can be discussed as long as the negative attitudes and biases are reinforced. A call-in TV show may feature a discussion about the immorality or "illness" of homosexuality, or, as in the case of Mirel Radoi, coverage may focus on a celebrity, in this case a Romanian-born football player, implying, as a false insult, that another football player was gay.[citation needed][70]

The government does allow public movie theaters to exist, since 2018, but the films are censored, as are the DVDs purchased in many retail stores. LGBT themes are generally one of the themes edited out of movies. Customs agents keep a list of films or TV shows that are not allowed to be brought into the kingdom.[71]

Government regulation of the Internet generally falls under the Royal Decrees on Anti-Cyber Crime (2007). Article 6 prohibits creating, distributing or accessing online content or webpages that the government deems to be pornographic or in violation of religious values or public morals or is a threat to public health, safety or order.[72]

The Saudi government has frequently blocked Internet users in the kingdom from accessing web pages or other online content that express support for LGBT rights.[73] The restrictions on the Internet extend to blogs, social media and video upload webpages.[74]

In 2010, a 27-year-old Saudi man was charged with homosexuality and impersonating a police officer when he posted a comical video of himself online, where he discusses popular culture, shows off his chest hair and flirts with the camera man. He was sentenced to a year in prison, with 1,000 lashes, and ordered to pay a fine of 5,000 rials (US$1,333).[75]

In a crackdown across stores in the Saudi capital, Riyadh, according to the Saudi state-run TV channel al-Ekhbariya, government officials seized rainbow-colored clothing, products, toys, etc. The officials claimed that the June 2022 move was aimed at curbing the direct and indirect promotion of homosexuality in the country. An unnamed official from the Ministry of Commerce claimed that they were looking out for "slogans that violate the rules of Islam and public morals like promoting homosexuality colors, targeting the young generation." The items seized in the crackdown included hair accessories for children, backpacks, pencil cases, and rainbow stripes featured on crayon packs. When asked for comments from the Saudi authorities, none were received.[76] In December 2022, authorities in neighboring Qatar carried out a similar purge.[77]


Main article: LGBT rights in Singapore § Media

Singapore has a series of laws and regulations that restrict LGBT topics in the media.[78] The Infocomm Media Development Authority bans any film, television program, advertisement or video game which "promote or glamorize homosexuality", if the "homosexual content is discreet in treatment and not gratuitous" they can instead be classified as restricted to people aged 18 or over.[79] Films can also be restricted to people aged 21 or over if their main themes are same-sex marriage or parenting.[80]


In December 2020, the Advertisement Board of Turkey's Trade Ministry ruled that LGBT-themed merchandise that is sold online has to bear 18+ rating. Article 24 of Turkey's 2015 Regulation on Commercial Advertisement and Unfair Commercial Practices protects children from material that would "negatively affect the physical, mental, moral, psychological and social development characteristics of children" and that items "cannot contain elements to disrupt, change or denigrate cultural, moral and positive social behaviours".[81]

Even though there are not any laws explicitly forbidding LGBT-related protests, the Istanbul Pride parade has been banned by the Istanbul governorship several times: in 2015,[82] 2016,[83] 2017, and in 2018, where people held an event regardless and some were arrested. It was banned again in 2019. In 2020, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, it was held online with no official interference.[84]

In 2017, the capital city of Ankara banned all LGBT or LGBT rights related events, under the pretext of providing "peace and security", with officials saying that such "exhibitions" could cause different groups of society to "publicly harbor hatred and hostility" towards each other; on the other hand news media noted that the ban came in the context of the steady erosion of civil liberties in Turkey following the failed 2016 coup attempt.[85]

In Ankara, all public LGBTI-related discussions are banned. In November 2017, the Ankara governor's office under state of emergency imposed an indefinite ban on LGBTI-focused public events. The emergency rule ended in July 2018; however, the ban was still not lifted. In October 2018, the government extended the ban to LGBTI-focused events generally without giving any idea about the end date.[86] In May 2019, police in Ankara violently ended a student-led Pride march at the Middle East Technical University (METU). According to a report from Amnesty International, authorities arrested 25 students during that.[87][88]

In June 2019, the 7th Izmir Pride, the 3rd Antalya Pride and the 27th Istanbul pride were banned by the cities governors.[89][90][91] Amnesty International last week called for Turkey to lift the Pride bans. However, days later a court suspended Izmir pride week ban.[92] In June 2019, 17 people were detained during press statement over Pride ban in Turkish police dispersed a crowd gathered in the city of Izmir for a public press statement over the governorate's pride parade ban and detained 17 people, after the group read their press statement.[93][94]

On 25 June 2019, the Governorship of Mersin banned all LGBT events to be held in the province for 20 days under the Turkish Law on Meetings and Demonstrations "with the aim of maintaining public well-being and public peace, preventing crimes and protecting public health, public morality and safety of life and property of citizens." The ban went in effect in the 5th Mersin Pride Week, which was to be held between 1–7 July.[95][96][97][98]


Main article: Anti-Homosexuality Act, 2023

In 2023, Uganda passed Anti-Homosexuality Act ("An Act to prohibit any form of sexual relations between persons of the same sex; to prohibit the promotion or recognition of sexual relations between persons of the same sex; and for related matters") which makes the promotion (including normalisation) of homosexuality punishable by imprisonment for up to 20 years and fines.

United Arab Emirates

The Government in the United Arab Emirates has restricted access to various websites and monitors chat rooms, instant messages and blogs. There were only a few reports of prosecutions and punishments but many people on the internet have been censored their conversations and identity in gay chat rooms. The country's only internet service provider has a proxy server which blocks any website that goes against the country's moral values. Sites regarding dating or marriage, LGBT issues, the Bahá’í Faith or sites related to unblocking the censorship are all inaccessible. Some reports or sites related to unblocking the censorship are all inaccessible. Reports even suggest that any site with the word "gay" or "sex" is blocked.[99]

The UAE's Media Regulatory Office banned the screening of Pixar's Lightyear in cinemas in June 2022, stating that the movie violated the Emirates' media content standards. The movie was opposed for depicting a same-sex relationship.[100] Later that month, Majid, a popular Arabic-language comic book series for children, came under investigation by the UAE authorities for allegedly promoting homosexuality. The magazine withdrew its May 2022 edition, which depicted a multi-colored character. In one dialogue the character said, "Amazing, I have the capability to colour things ... Ali will wish to become like me." According to The New Arab,[101] a number of social media users had complained that Majid had intentionally used the Arabic word مثلي (mithli) in this character's speech, a word which means both a "homosexual" and "like me".[102]

In June 2023, the UAE banned Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse, a week ahead of its expected release in the region. The movie failed to pass the Emirates' censorship requirements, due to a scene that depicted a glimpse of a transgender flag displaying the words "Protect Trans Lives".[103]

United States (sub-national)

Main article: Anti-LGBT curriculum laws in the United States

Further information: 2021–2023 book banning in the United States

Several U.S. states have laws which prohibit or limit the mention or discussion of gay and transgender issues in public schools. In theory, these laws mainly apply to sex education courses, but they can also be applied to other parts of the school curriculum as well as to extracurricular activities and groups such as gay–straight alliances.[104]

These explicit anti-LGBT curriculum laws can be found in six US states, namely Florida (for kindergarten to grade 3 and instruction that is considered "not age appropriate or developmentally appropriate for students" in any grade),[105] Alabama (For kindergarten to grade 5),[106] Louisiana, Mississippi, Oklahoma, and Texas.[107] Five other states (Montana, Arizona, Arkansas, Tennessee and Florida) require parental notification of instruction on LGBTQ issues and allows parents to opt-out of such instruction.[108]

They are similar to the now-repealed section 28 of the British Local Government Act 1988, which prohibited local authorities from "intentionally promoting homosexuality, publishing material with the intention of promoting homosexuality, or promoting the teaching in any maintained school of the acceptability of homosexuality as a pretended family relationship."[109]

States that have repealed their anti-LGBT curriculum laws include Alabama (since 29 April 2021),[110] Arizona (since 1 July 2019),[111][112] North Carolina (since 2006),[113] South Carolina (since 12 March 2020)[114] and Utah (since 1 July 2017).[115]


The government blocks access to webpages that express support of LGBT rights.[116] This policy of censorship also extends to publications and magazines in Yemen.

In 2012, the magazine Al Thaqafiya was shut down by the government for publishing a review of the Egyptian film titled, Heena Maysara (translates to "Till things get better"). The reviewer, a Yemeni filmmaker named Hamid Aqbi, expressed some support for LGBT rights while discussing the film.[117]

In 2004, the Yemem Times, an English-language magazine, was allowed to publish an opinion piece opposing legal recognition of gay marriage.

In 2003, the Week, an Arabic-language magazine, published an article that included interviews with Yemeni men imprisoned for homosexuality. The three journalists involved with the article were convicted by the government.[118][full citation needed]

Repealed laws

Australia (sub-national)

See also: LGBT rights in Western Australia

In December 1989 in the state of Western Australia, the Parliament of Western Australia passed the Law Reform (Decriminalisation of Sodomy) Act 1989 which decriminalised private gay sex while making it a crime for a person to "...promote or encourage homosexual behaviour as part of the teaching in any primary or secondary educational institutions..." or make public policy with respect to the undefined promotion of homosexual behaviour.[119][120] It was repealed in 2002 via the Acts Amendment (Gay and Lesbian Law Reform) Act 2002, which also repealed the laws with respect to promotion of homosexual behaviour in public policy and in educational institutions.[121]


Main article: Article 200

"Article 200" (Articolul 200 in Romanian) was a section of the Penal Code of Romania that criminalised homosexual relationships. It was introduced in 1968 under the communist regime of Nicolae Ceauşescu. Under pressure from the Council of Europe, it was amended on 14 November 1996, when homosexual sex in private between two consenting adults was decriminalised. However, the amended Article 200 continued to criminalise same-sex relationships if they were displayed publicly or caused a "public scandal". It also continued to ban the promotion of homosexual activities, as well as the formation of gay-centred organisations (including LGBT rights organisations). It was repealed by the Năstase government on 22 June 2001.

In June 2023, the Romanian Senate approved the draft law prohibiting spreading a theory that gender is different from biological sex and that there are more than two genders, but the President of Romania appealed to the Constitutional Court to review the draft law.[122]

South Korea

In 2001, South Korea's Ministry of Information and Communication's Information and Communications Ethics Committee began censoring online LGBT content, but it stopped the practice in 2003.[123]

United Kingdom

Main article: Section 28

"Section 28" or "Clause 28"[note 1] of the Local Government Act 1988 caused the addition of "Section 2A" to the Local Government Act 1986,[124] which affected England, Wales and Scotland. The amendment was enacted on 24 May 1988, and stated that a local authority "shall not intentionally promote homosexuality or publish material with the intention of promoting homosexuality" or "promote the teaching in any maintained school of the acceptability of homosexuality as a pretended family relationship".[125]

The law's existence caused many groups to close or limit their activities or self-censor. For example, a number of lesbian, gay and bisexual student support groups in schools and colleges across Britain were closed owing to fears by council legal staff that they could breach the act.[126]

It was repealed on 21 June 2000 in Scotland by the Ethical Standards in Public Life etc. (Scotland) Act 2000, one of the first pieces of legislation enacted by the new Scottish Parliament, and on 18 November 2003 in the rest of the United Kingdom by section 122 of the Local Government Act 2003.[127]

Rejected proposals


In August 2013, Armenian police briefly introduced a bill which would have banned "public promotion of non-traditional sexual relationships". According to Armenian police, "preserving the traditional Armenian family represents the pillar of national survival". The bill was removed from consideration after several days.[128]


On 26 May 2015, the Constitutional Council of Kazakhstan declared a pending bill, which would have banned the "propaganda of nontraditional sexual orientation", unconstitutional. The council rejected it because of its vague wording. The bill passed the Senate, Parliament's upper house, in February 2015 and was sent to President Nursultan Nazarbayev for signature. It had already been approved by the lower house.[129]

Moldova (national)

On 23 May 2013, the Parliament of Moldova passed a bill which bans the propaganda of prostitution, paedophilia and "any other relations than those related to marriage and family in accordance with the Constitution and the Family Code". The bill also includes fines. The bill was signed into law on 5 July 2013 and came into effect on 12 July 2013. The law did not explicitly prohibit the "propaganda" of homosexuality, but it could have been interpreted as such by judges.[130][131] On 11 October 2013, the Parliament passed a bill intended to remove the content which could have been interpreted as a ban on "homosexual propaganda".[132][133]

In April 2016, lawmakers introduced a similar bill, which was approved in committee in May 2016. The bill would amend the Law on the Rights of the Child and the Code of Administrative Offenses and ban spreading "homosexual propaganda" to minors "through public meetings, the media, the Internet," and other means. The second draft law of 24 March 2017 envisaged amending the Law on Protection of Children from the Negative Impact of Information with a view to censor public dissemination of information about non-heterosexual relations/persons.[134] The parliament refused to adopt the amendments in both cases.[135]


A draft law that would make it illegal to talk about homosexuality in public and in the media and to import, distribute, and broadcast video, photo, and audio products that "encourages homosexuality" (with penalties of up to five years in prison and fines for up to 5,000 (US$616))[136] was passed in first reading in the Verkhovna Rada (Ukrainian Parliament) on 2 October 2012.[137] An estimated 20 community activists representing several organizations protested outside of the Verkhovna Rada building during the vote.[138] On 4 October 2012, a second vote was tentatively scheduled for 16 October.[138][139][140][141][137][142] In January 2015, the bill was removed from the agenda.[143][144]

A petition was subsequently started by anti-gay groups, calling for "measures to be taken to stop the propaganda of homosexuality and for defending family values". In March 2018, Ukraine's Anti-Discrimination Ombudsperson removed the petition from the electronic petitions section. By then, the petition had received 23,000 signatures and support from various religious organisations. The Ombudsman described the petition as "anti-freedom", and deleted it due to "containing calls to restrict human rights".[145]


In August 2017, a bill to jail same-sex couples who get married for three years, with a fine of $8,000, passed the Haitian Senate,[146] but never became law.[147] In 2017, the Senate voted to ban "any public demonstration of support for homosexuality and proselytizing in favour of such acts". The fate of this bill remains unknown.

Legal restrictions on LGBT expression by jurisdiction

The data is provided by ILGA (with the exception of data on Kyrgyzstan and Iraq) and highlights the legal restrictions on LGBT expression by jurisdiction.[148]

The ILGA classifies laws as the ones which explicitly censor LGBT issues and the ones which censor them non-explicitly.[148]

In addition, Spartacus International Gay Guide also includes a censorship section on their index.[149]

Explicit restrictions
Non-explicit restrictions
No restrictions
Unclear or uncertain
Legal status of LGBT laws present
Country Status Introduced in
 Afghanistan Non-explicit restrictions 1965; 2006
 Albania No restrictions
 Algeria Explicit restrictions 1982
 American Samoa No restrictions
 Andorra No restrictions
 Anguilla No restrictions
 Armenia No restrictions
 Angola No restrictions
 Antigua and Barbuda No restrictions
 Argentina No restrictions
 Aruba No restrictions
 Australia No restrictions
 Austria No restrictions
 Azerbaijan No restrictions
 Bahamas No restrictions
 Bahrain Non-explicit restrictions Censorship present[150]
 Bangladesh Non-explicit restrictions Censorship present[150]
 Barbados No restrictions
 Belarus Non-explicit restrictions 2017
 Belize No restrictions
 Belgium No restrictions
 Benin No restrictions
 Bermuda No restrictions
 Bhutan No restrictions
 Bolivia No restrictions
 Botswana No restrictions
 Bonaire No restrictions
 Bosnia and Herzegovina No restrictions
 Brazil Unclear or uncertain
 British Indian Ocean Territory No restrictions
 British Virgin Islands No restrictions
 Brunei Non-explicit restrictions Censorship present[150]
 Bulgaria No restrictions
 Burkina Faso No restrictions
 Burundi Non-explicit restrictions 2009
 Cabo Verde No restrictions
 Cambodia No restrictions
 Cameroon Explicit restrictions 2010; 2016
 Canada No restrictions
 Cayman Islands No restrictions
 Central African Republic Non-explicit restrictions Censorship present[150]
 Chad No restrictions
 Chile No restrictions
 China Explicit restrictions 2015; 2017
 Colombia No restrictions
 Comoros No restrictions
 Congo No restrictions
 Cook Islands No restrictions
 Costa Rica No restrictions
 Cote d'Ivoire Non-explicit restrictions 1981; 2019
 Croatia No restrictions
 Cuba No restrictions
 Cyprus No restrictions
 Curaçao No restrictions
 Czech Republic No restrictions
 Democratic Republic of the Congo Non-explicit restrictions 1940
 Denmark No restrictions
 Djibouti Non-explicit restrictions 1995
 Dominica No restrictions
 Dominican Republic No restrictions
 East Timor No restrictions
 Ecuador No restrictions
 Egypt Explicit restrictions 1937; 2017
 El Salvador Non-explicit restrictions Censorship present[150]
 Equatorial Guinea Non-explicit restrictions Censorship present[150]
 Eritrea Non-explicit restrictions Censorship present[150]
 Estonia No restrictions
 Eswatini Non-explicit restrictions Censorship present[150]
 Ethiopia Non-explicit restrictions 2004
 Falkland Islands No restrictions
 Faroe Islands No restrictions
 Fiji No restrictions
 Finland No restrictions
 France No restrictions
 French Guiana No restrictions
 French Polynesia No restrictions
 French Southern and Antarctic Lands No restrictions
 Gabon No restrictions
 Gambia No restrictions
 Georgia Non-explicit restrictions Censorship present[150]
 Germany No restrictions
 Ghana Explicit restrictions 2024[151]
 Gibraltar No restrictions
 Greece No restrictions
 Greenland No restrictions
 Grenada No restrictions
 Guadeloupe No restrictions
 Guam No restrictions
 Guatemala No restrictions
 Guernsey No restrictions
 Guinea No restrictions
 Guinea-Bissau No restrictions
 Guyana No restrictions
 Haiti Unclear or uncertain
 Honduras No restrictions
 Hong Kong No restrictions
 Hungary Explicit restrictions 2021[152]
 Iceland No restrictions
 India No restrictions
 Indonesia Explicit restrictions 2008; 2016
 Iran Non-explicit restrictions 1986; 2009;
 Iraq Explicit restrictions[29] 2023
 Ireland No restrictions
 Isle of Man No restrictions
 Israel No restrictions
 Italy No restrictions
 Jamaica Unclear or uncertain
 Japan No restrictions
 Jersey No restrictions
 Jordan Non-explicit restrictions 1998
 Kazakhstan Non-explicit restrictions Censorship present[150]
 Kenya Explicit restrictions 2012
 Kiribati No restrictions
 Kosovo No restrictions
 Kuwait Non-explicit restrictions 2006; 2016
 Kyrgyzstan Non-explicit restrictions[153] 2023
 Laos No restrictions
 Latvia No restrictions
 Lebanon Non-explicit restrictions 1943
 Lesotho No restrictions
 Liechtenstein No restrictions
 Liberia No restrictions
 Libya Non-explicit restrictions 1953; 2016
 Lithuania Non-explicit restrictions 2010
 Luxembourg No restrictions
 Macau No restrictions
 Madagascar No restrictions
 Malawi Non-explicit restrictions Censorship present[150]
 Malaysia Non-explicit restrictions 2010
 Maldives No restrictions
 Mali Non-explicit restrictions Censorship present[150]
 Malta No restrictions
 Marshall Islands No restrictions
 Martinique No restrictions
 Mauritania Non-explicit restrictions 1983
 Mauritius No restrictions
 Mayotte No restrictions
 Mexico No restrictions
 Micronesia No restrictions
 Moldova Unclear or uncertain
 Monaco No restrictions
 Mongolia No restrictions
 Montserrat No restrictions
 Montenegro No restrictions
 Morocco Non-explicit restrictions 1962
 Mozambique No restrictions
 Myanmar Non-explicit restrictions Censorship present[150]
 Namibia No restrictions
 Nauru No restrictions
   Nepal No restrictions
 Netherlands No restrictions
 New Caledonia No restrictions
 New Zealand No restrictions
 Nicaragua No restrictions
 Niger No restrictions
 Nigeria Explicit restrictions 2013
 Niue No restrictions
 Northern Cyprus No restrictions
 Northern Mariana Islands No restrictions
 North Korea Non-explicit restrictions 2009
 North Macedonia No restrictions
 Norway No restrictions
 Oman Non-explicit restrictions 1984; 2007
 Pakistan Non-explicit restrictions 2016
 Palau No restrictions
 Palestine No restrictions
 Panama No restrictions
 Papua New Guinea No restrictions
 Paraguay Explicit restrictions 2017
 Peru No restrictions
 Pitcairn Islands No restrictions
 Philippines No restrictions
 Poland Unclear or uncertain
 Portugal No restrictions
 Puerto Rico No restrictions
 Qatar Non-explicit restrictions 2004
 Réunion No restrictions
 Romania Unclear or uncertain
 Russia Non-explicit restrictions 2013
 Rwanda Non-explicit restrictions Censorship present[150]
 Saba No restrictions
 Saint Barthélemy No restrictions
 Saint Kitts and Nevis No restrictions
 Saint Martin No restrictions
 Saint Lucia No restrictions
 Saint Pierre and Miquelon No restrictions
 Saint Vincent and the Grenadines No restrictions
 Samoa Unclear or uncertain
 San Marino No restrictions
 Sao Tome and Principe No restrictions
 Saudi Arabia Non-explicit restrictions 2007
 Senegal Non-explicit restrictions Censorship present[150]
 Serbia No restrictions
 Seychelles No restrictions
 Sierra Leone No restrictions
 Singapore Explicit restrictions 1994; 1997;
2004; 2011;
2013; 2014;
2016; 2019
 Sint Eustatius No restrictions
 Sint Maarten No restrictions
 Slovakia No restrictions
 Slovenia No restrictions
 Solomon Islands No restrictions
 Somalia Non-explicit restrictions 1964
 Somaliland No restrictions
 South Africa No restrictions
 South Korea No restrictions
 South Sudan Non-explicit restrictions Censorship present[150]
 Spain No restrictions
 Sri Lanka No restrictions
 Sudan Non-explicit restrictions 1991
 Suriname No restrictions
 Sweden No restrictions
  Switzerland No restrictions
 Syria Non-explicit restrictions 1949
 Taiwan No restrictions
 Tajikistan Non-explicit restrictions Censorship present[150]
 Tanzania Non-explicit restrictions 1981
 Thailand No restrictions
 Tokelau No restrictions
 Togo Explicit restrictions 1982; 2015
 Tonga No restrictions
 Trinidad and Tobago No restrictions
 Tunisia Non-explicit restrictions 2004
 Turkey Non-explicit restrictions 2007
 Turkmenistan Non-explicit restrictions Censorship present[150]
 Turks and Caicos Islands No restrictions
 Tuvalu No restrictions
 Uganda Explicit restrictions 1995; 1996;
2013; 2019
 Ukraine No restrictions
 United Arab Emirates Explicit restrictions 2012; 2016
 United Kingdom No restrictions
 United States No restrictions
 United States Virgin Islands No restrictions
 United States Minor Outlying Islands No restrictions
 Uruguay No restrictions
 Uzbekistan Non-explicit restrictions Censorship present[150]
 Vanuatu No restrictions
 Vatican City No restrictions
 Venezuela No restrictions
 Vietnam No restrictions
 Wallis and Futuna No restrictions
 Western Sahara No restrictions
 Yemen Non-explicit restrictions 1990
 Zambia Non-explicit restrictions 2005
 Zimbabwe No restrictions
Restrictions like Anti-LGBT curriculum laws in the United States
No restrictions
Unclear or uncertain
Legal status of LGBT laws present in US states
Country Status
 Alabama Restrictions present
 Alaska No restrictions
 Arkansas No restrictions
 Arizona No restrictions
 California No restrictions[154]
 Colorado No restrictions[154]
 Connecticut No restrictions[154]
 Delaware No restrictions
 Florida Restrictions present[155][156]
 Georgia No restrictions
 Hawaii No restrictions[154]
 Idaho No restrictions
 Illinois No restrictions[157][158][159]
 Indiana Restrictions present[160]
 Iowa No restrictions
 Kansas No restrictions
 Kentucky No restrictions
 Louisiana Restrictions present[161]
 Maine No restrictions
 Maryland No restrictions
 Massachusetts No restrictions
 Michigan No restrictions
 Minnesota No restrictions
 Mississippi Restrictions present[162]
 Missouri No restrictions
 Montana No restrictions
 Nebraska No restrictions
 Nevada No restrictions[154]
 New Hampshire No restrictions
 New Mexico No restrictions
 New Jersey No restrictions[154]
 New York No restrictions
 North Carolina No restrictions
 North Dakota No restrictions
 Ohio No restrictions
 Oklahoma Restrictions present[163]
 Oregon No restrictions[154]
 Pennsylvania No restrictions
 Rhode Island No restrictions
 South Carolina No restrictions
 South Dakota No restrictions
 Tennessee No restrictions
 Texas Restrictions present[164]
 Utah No restrictions
 Vermont No restrictions
 Virginia No restrictions
 Washington No restrictions
 West Virginia No restrictions
 Wisconsin No restrictions
 Wyoming No restrictions


  1. ^ While going through the UK Parliament, the amendment was constantly relabelled with a variety of clause numbers as other amendments were added to or deleted from the Bill, but by the final version of the Bill, which received Royal Assent, it had become Section 28. Section 28 is sometimes referred to as Clause 28 – in the United Kingdom, Acts of Parliament have sections, whereas in a Bill (which is put before Parliament to pass) those sections are called clauses."When gay became a four-letter word". BBC. 20 January 2000. Retrieved 4 January 2010.


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See also