the Prime Minister of Zimbabwe, has made an unexpected u-turn on
gay rights - even saying they should be enshrined in a new
The leader of the African country has previously echoed Robert
Mugabe's homophobic views, but revised his stance during an
interview with the BBC.
He claimed gay rights were now a "human right" that should
Zimbabwe is in the process of drafting a new constitution, which
will be put to a referendum
ahead of the elections.
Homosexual acts are currently illegal in Zimbabwe, as in most
African countries where many
people view homosexuality as un-Christian and un-African.
Mr Tsvangirai told BBC's Newsnight programme that there was a
"very strong cultural feeling" against homosexuality in Zimbabwe,
but he would defend gay rights if he became president.
"It's a very controversial subject in my part of the world. My
attitude is that I hope the constitution will come out with freedom
of sexual orientation, for as long as it does not interfere with
"To me, it's a human right," he said.
The news has been welcomed by one DIVA reader who is from
Zimbabwe. Skye Chirape told us: "I was born in Zimbabwe and
only moved to the UK in 2001. I wasn't submissive like I was
supposed to be, and I knew I wasn't going to be able to survive in
such a society with a big mouth like mine - I needed to
"When I was growing up, I believed all humans were equal. I fight
for the underdog. I don't like people who are bullies. I want to
see people being treated equally regardless of their race or
sexuality or gender. I think the world is big enough for all of