Kigali - Post Report Question and Answers

Is this a good city for LGBT expatriates? Why or why not?

LGBT couples were there and they seemed happy in the environment. - Jan 2022

Not sure. If the locals do have problems with LGBT people, they wouldn't say/do anything. (Rwandans, for the most part, are reserved and muted; there is a culture of not speaking out against anything). - Jul 2020

Less bad than other African countries, but small enough that it might be hard to find what you want. - Sep 2019

Yes. We haven't had any issues. - Jun 2018

I am not entirely sure. I think the LGBT community is pretty hush-hush, but there are a number of LGBT mission employees. - Dec 2017

I don't think there's much of an LGBT scene, unless it's underground. LGBT diplomatic couples can come to post. - Jan 2017

I'm not sure as it seems to be a pretty conservative culture. - Apr 2016

It isn't widely accepted; it isn't widely accepted in general to show public affection. There are groups working on better acceptance so again, this may be something to change as time goes on. There are not dedicated nightlife places though as you may see in other locations. - Oct 2014

The city doesn't seem to to be pro or anti. You don't see open affection and there isn't a locally "out" population as homosexually is culturally frowned upon but we have a couple at the embassy and they've never mentioned harassment. - Jul 2014

I think it is ok, but I also feel like the Rwandans appreciate a little don't ask don't tell. With that being said there are gay and lesbian expats here and they do fine. - Sep 2013

The Rwandan government is more tolerant of LGBT than governments of neighboring countries, but society is conservative. It is much more difficult to be an LGBT Rwandan than an LGBT expat. - May 2012

So-so. There are no gay clubs, and it is frowned upon by the local population. Have not heard of any gay bashing here though. - Jul 2011

Last I heard the government was trying to join Uganda in banning homosexual activity, but I haven't seen any anti-homosexual sentiment coming from the local populace - Oct 2010

Recently the government attempted to outlaw homosexuality, in the end it fell through. Nonetheless homosexuality is not readily accepted amongst the local population. A very common sight is men holding hands. However, they are not gay. It's just a culture thing. You can even see policemen who are holding a gun with one hand and another man's hand in the other. They're friends, that’s all. Women do it, too. What’s rare is to see men and women holding hands. - Jan 2010

I knew a few people who were gay/lesbian, though the community I guessing is quite small. - Sep 2008

Rwanda has a strict policy and low tolerance for outward display of same sex relationships. What you do in your own home and does not involve Rwandans is acceptable. This should not be confused with the customary practice of men holding hands with other men or of sitting on each others laps. - Aug 2008


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