International Lesbian and Gay Association (ILGA) launched the 2008 version of its map on LGBTI rights in the world on occasion of the federation’s 30th anniversary (previous version of the map - here).
According to the map, in South Caucasus (as well as in a broader region, including Russia, Turkey and Iran), only Georgia has introduced legislation which specifically outlaws discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation. Armenia, Russia, Turkey and Azerbaijan do not provide similar provisions. However, this map does not specify the level and comprehensiveness of that protection, which varies. Particularly, in Georgia antidiscriminatory provisions cover only employment: since May 2006, as part of the new Labour Code, discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation is illegal in employment. This by no means implies that the situation with LGBT people and gay rights is particularly better in Georgia than say in Turkey. However, it is a step forward in a right direction.
Among our neighbours, the most appalling situation is certainly in Iran which is one of only 7 countries worldwide where death penalty for same-sex acts is still in place and acted upon.
Below I provide a brief summary statistics on LGBT rights in the world, as of January 2008, taken from the map:
- death penalty: 7 countries
- imprisonment: 76 countries and 6 entities
- antidiscrimination laws: 49 countries and 33 entities
- recognition and registration for same-sex unions: 19 countries and 14 entities