A media ban has been put in place for a meeting between the US Vice President Mike Pence and Ireland’s PM Leo Varadkar.
The meeting is due to take place this morning in Washington and the media will be prohibited from reporting the remarks from both leaders.
The decision to impose a media ban was made by the Vice Presidents office and Irish Government sources said they are “not happy” that the media are being prevented from reporting on the event.
The Taoiseach was asked on Wednesday if he will raise the issue of Pence’s alleged support for conversion therapy with the Vice President during their meeting:
“I’m told Vice President Pence is not a supporter of conversion therapy even though some people have alleged he is,” he said.
“But I imagine if I have the opportunity – I’m going to meet him over breakfast – so if I have the opportunity I’ll certainly be mentioning the wider issue of equal rights and freedoms for LGBT.”
Last year’s meeting between Mr Pence and former Taoiseach Enda Kenny was open to the media.
Meanwhile back in Ireland, a Bill aimed at banning the abusive and discredited practice known as so-called gay ‘conversion therapy’ was published by Senator Fintan Warfield, with input from the National LGBT Federation (NXF) on Monday.
The National LGBT Federation (NXF) and Senator Warfield have both called on Taoiseach Leo Varadkar to make clear during his meeting this week with US Vice President Mike Pence, that Ireland abhors gay ‘conversion therapy’ and is also deeply concerned at attempts by the Trump-Pence administration to attack and erode LGBT rights in the US.
Disturbingly, Mike Pence himself has been a proponent of gay ‘conversion therapy’ and that it should be funded by draining the funding from HIV prevention programmes.
In Congress, he voted against hate crime laws, gay people serving in the military, and discrimination protections for LGBT people. He is believed to be behind many of the anti-LGBT actions taking by the Trump administration.
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