Uganda's president has signed legislation that provides for life imprisonment as a punishment for gay sex.
John Baird, Canada's foreign affairs minister, has responded by criticizing the move.
Baird also said it will affect relations between the two countries.
“Canada is extremely disappointed that President Museveni has signed this piece of legislation, which will make homosexuality punishable with life imprisonment. We strongly urge the President to protect the human rights of all Ugandans regardless of their sexual orientation, in accordance with Uganda’s constitution," Baird said in a statement.
“This act is a serious setback for human rights, dignity and fundamental freedoms and deserves to be widely condemned. Regrettably, this discriminatory law will serve as an impediment in our relationship with the Ugandan government.
“Canada has repeatedly raised our concerns with the Government of Uganda, and we have done so again. Our engagement on human rights issues will only become more persistent. We will continue to support efforts to decriminalize homosexuality and combat violence against people on the basis of their sexual orientation.”
The anti-gay bill approved today (February 24) by Ugandan president Yoweri Museveni calls for first-time offenders to be sentenced to 14 years in prison.
Life in prison would be the maximum penalty for "repeated gay sex between consenting adults and acts involving a minor, a disabled person or where one partner is infected with HIV", CBC News reported.