Amnesty International says a draft anti-gay bill in Chad represents a backward step for human rights in the country.

The rights group said Tuesday that amendments to the penal code proposed by the government would criminalize same-sex conduct in Chad, threatening jail sentences of between 15 and 20 years, and a fine ranging from $100 and $1,000.

If the proposed legislation is enacted, Chadian people "who are perceived to be gay or don't conform to traditional gender stereotypes will not be able to live their lives with equality and dignity," said Amnesty.

Homosexuality is criminalized in 38 African countries, including Nigeria and Uganda, according to Amnesty International.

In Gambia, lawmakers recently proposed legislation that would introduce sentences up to life imprisonment for some homosexual offenses.