Last edited: April 16, 2005

Gay Sex Aussie in Fiji Jail: Protest

The Advertiser, April 11, 2005

PROTESTERS today urged the federal government to help an Australian man jailed in Fiji for having gay sex with a local man.

The small group of protesters today gathered outside the Fijian consulate in Sydney to picket against the jailing of Australian university lecturer Thomas McCoskar. The 55-year-old academic was last week sentenced to two years’ jail for having consensual sex with Dhirendra Nandan in Nadi, Fiji.

Australian Greens Senator Kerry Nettle, who joined the small group of protesters, said anomalies between the Fijian constitution and the legal system were responsible for the unfair jail term.

“The constitution stipulates that you can’t discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation but at the same time they have laws that outlaw gay sex,” she said.

“We are calling on both the Fijian government and the Australian government to do something about repealing anti-gay laws in Fiji,” Senator Nettle said.

She said the Greens would take steps to have Mr McCoskar brought back to Australia to serve out his sentence if necessary but an appeal was likely.

The Australian government should do more to uphold international standards on civil and political rights, she said.

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