Gay tourists have been warned to stay away from the nation of Ethiopia, with religious leaders threatening death.
The outrage and death threats from the countries religious leaders followed the news that Toto Tours, an American LGBTI travel company, would be promoting a 16-day ‘Treasures Of Ethiopia’ package to the country in October and November 2019.
The tour which promises travellers “a historical and cultural journey to some of the most remote areas of Ethiopia for the adventure of a lifetime,” has resulted in calls on the Ethiopian government to block the visitors.
Tagay Tadele of the Inter-Religious Council of Ethiopia has condemned the tour and urged his countrymen to “stop supporting these sinful and evil acts,” and adding that “tour programmes and dating programmes that try to use our historical sites and heritage should be immediately stopped by the Ethiopian government.”
Speaking to AFP, Dereje Negash, from the Sileste Mihret United Association, explained that “Homosexuality is hated as well as being illegal in Ethiopia. Toto Tours are wrong to plan to conduct tours in our religious and historical places.”
He warned that “If Toto Tours comes to Ethiopia where 97% of Ethiopians surveyed oppose homosexuality, they will be damaged, they could even die.”
Despite the treats, Dan Ware who is the president of Toto Tours appears determined to go ahead with the trip saying, “We come with only the greatest respect and humility. The eyes of the entire world will be on the people of Ethiopia to see what happens to us.”
Currently, in Ethiopia, both male and female homosexuality is illegal with those found ‘guilty’ facing between 7 to 15 years in prison.