Diplomat Daniel Foote said Zambia was risking "degradation of your own citizens rights." The ambassador had angered the Zambian government after criticizing the imprisonment of a same-sex couple.
US Ambassador to Zambia Daniel Foote left the southern African country on Thursday following a row over the diplomat's criticism of the government's repression of same-sex couples.
The government in Lusaka said they asked Washington to recall the ambassador because of his "inappropriate comments," but did not comment further on his departure.
In a statement before his departure, Foote called on Zambia to protect its reputation as a democracy and "avoid degradation of your own citizens' human, economic, and political rights."
Same-sex relationships are illegal in Zambia. In November, Foote spoke out against a verdict that handed couple Japhet Chataba and Steven Samba prison sentences for being in a same-sex relationship.
"I was personally horrified to read yesterday about the sentencing of two men, who had a consensual relationship which hurt absolutely no one, to 15 years' imprisonment," Foote wrote at the time.
The diplomat has said he was also targeted after he skipped a World AIDS Day event in protest of the government's conduct.
In 2019, the administration of US President Donald Trump said it would lead a push to end laws criminalizing homosexual relationships around the world.
Zambia is hugely reliant on foreign aid, especially from the US.