Stigma hampers Senegalese AIDS fight

Published: January 4, 2010

Stigma hampers Senegalese AIDS fight

DAKAR, Senegal — Three gay Senegalese men huddle just after midnight in the corner of a restaurant, wolfing down chicken dinners after agreeing to have their photographs taken on the condition their faces are hidden from view.

All three, who like two-thirds of gay Senegalese men maintain conjugal relationships with wives or girlfriends as part of their public facade, say they live each day fearing that exposure of their homosexuality would provoke contempt, family rejection and possible violence in this poor, predominantly Muslim country on West Africa’s coast.

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