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2 convicted under Malawi anti-gay laws separated

May 26, 2010

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BLANTYRE, Malawi—The prison spokesman says the gay men convicted under Malawi's anti-homosexuality laws are being held in separate facilities.

Evance Phiri told The Associated Press Wednesday that Tiwonge Chimbalanga is being held at a Blantyre prison, while his partner Steven Monjeza is at a prison some 50 miles (90 kilometers) away. Phiri says they were separated for their own safety, but did not elaborate.

They were convicted last week and sentenced to the maximum 14 years at hard labor.

Maxwell Manda told the AP his cousin, Chimbalanga is distraught because of the separation.

Manda says Chimbalanga is being kept away from hardened criminals. He adds his cousin wants to leave Malawi once he is released.

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