The plethora of HIV criminalisation laws on the continent can leave one feeling dizzy. PlusNews has compiled a list of African countries that have criminalised HIV  in one, easy-to-use map.

The fine print

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Angola: A draft law calling for a sentence of between 3 to 10 years in the case of deliberate transmission.

Côte d’Ivoire: As of August 2008, the country continued to debate a draft law that would criminalise transmission

Egypt: Homosexuality - or “immoral behaviour” - in the country is criminalised under a 1961 law. Those suspected of violating the law have been forcibly tested for HIV and anally examined. Possible punishment is one year in prison.

Guinea: By July 2006, the country criminalised intentional transmission, even mother-to-child. transmission.

Guinea-Bissau: By 2007, the country criminalised intentional transmission, even mother-to-child transmission.

Kenya: The country criminalised HIV infection in 2006, those charged with sexual offenses must submit to HIV tests by the state or face five years in jail and/or a 50,000 shilling (USD$641) fine. If found to be HIV-positive – whether the perpetrator knew their status or not – they can be sentenced to at least 15 years with the possibility of life.

Malawi: As of June, the country was debating a bill that would provide for mandatory HIV testing of pregnant women, those charged with sexual offenses, sex workers and persons in polygamous relationships.

Mozambique: Under legislation enacted in 2002, those convicted of sexual offences must submit to HIV testing and can incur longer sentences if found to be HIV-positive. The country is currently discussing an updated version of the bill which would criminalise intentional transmission.

Sierra Leone: By 2007, the country criminalised intentional transmission, even mother-to-child.

Senegal: As of August 2008, the country continued to debate a draft law that would criminalise transmission

Uganda: The country is currently debating a draft that will criminalise intentional transmission with a punishment of death. It will also force HIV-positive people to reveal their status to their sexual partners, and also allow medical personnel to reveal someone's status to their partner.

Zimbabwe: The country first criminalised HIV transmission in 2001, with harsher provisions attached in 2006. Currently, someone convicted of sexual assault who is found to be HIV-positive will receive a stiffer sentence of at least 10 years regardless of whether they knew their status or not at the time of the assault.

Sources: Canadian HIV/AIDS Legal Network, International Planned Parenthood Federation, Human Rights Watch, PlusNews
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