Last updated on: 3 September 2012

Criminalisation of HIV transmission/exposure

Whether Specific law enacted: 
Number of people prosecuted: 
Number of people convicted: 
Applicable law: 

Law N°……… of………… on Prevention and Punishment of Gender-based Violence (Awaiting publication in official gazette.)

Key wording in the law: 

Article 30: Penalty for intentionally transmitting a terminal disease

Any person guilty of intentionally transmitting a terminal disease to someone else shall be liable to life imprisonment.


From the information received from UNAIDS, it appears that no one has yet been prosecuted for transmitting HIV to another person in Rwanda.  However, a new law, soon to be enacted on the prevention of gender-based violence, has a provision which allows for a person to be prosecuted for intentionally transmitting a terminal disease.

Survey respondents/Organisations working on HIV and the Law: 

UNAIDS – RWANDA, MPH Dieudonné RUTURWA, Social Mobilisation Adviser, Phone 250 0830 26 46, Email

Information also provided by: Network of people living with HIV and AIDS

Rwanda Women’s Network, +250 58 36 62, Contact: Peter Turyahikayo,


Other laws and policies with an impact on responses to HIV

Laws and regulations relating to entry, stay or residence in the country: 

There are no specific entry or residence regulations for people living with HIV and AIDS. Neither a medical certificate nor an HIV test result is required when entering the country. Foreigners with a known HIV infection are not subject to specific residence regulations. There are no regulations regarding the control, deportation or expulsion of those concerned.

In the case of serious illness, e.g. AIDS, residence permission can be refused.

There are no entry or residence restrictions for persons living with HIV and AIDS.

Travellers are required to carry evidence of a yellow fever vaccination.

For updated information, please go to:

Laws relating to same sex, sexual relations: 

Male to Male relationships: Legal

Punishments for male to male relationships: No law

Female to Female Relationships: Legal

Age of consent: Different for heterosexuals and homosexuals

For updated information, please go to: