In light of recent events with Brunei introducing the death sentence for LGBT+ people, Senator Fintan Warfield, the Sinn Féin spokesperson on LGBT+ rights, has written to An Taoiseach expressing his opposition to the Attorney General, Seamus Woulfe, attending an upcoming event held in The Dorchester Hotel.
The London venue, which is owned by the Sultan of Brunei, has recently attracted protests from those horrified by the country’s introduction of Sharia laws which not only include death by stoning for LGBT+ people, but also punish adultery by flogging.
Senator Warfield opposed the news that the Attorney General would attend the Annual Meeting of the International Academy of Trial Lawyers held between April 10 and 14.
I have just written to Taoiseach @LeoVaradkar regarding information received by Sinn Féin that the Attorney General is due to attend an event in the Dorchester Hotel, London this week – a hotel owned by the Sultan of Brunei. pic.twitter.com/g8go3kp2Qm
— Fintan Warfield (@fintanwarfield) April 10, 2019
In a statement, Senator Warfield said: “In response to Deputies Sean Crowe and Donnchadh Ó Laoghaire in the Dáil today, Tánaiste Simon Coveney confirmed that the Attorney General has been invited to attend an event at the Dorchester Hotel over the coming days. The Dorchester Hotel is a business owned by the Sultan of Brunei. Brunei is a State where homosexuality is illegal. The Sultan of Brunei has absolute control in the country and has recently announced that barbaric new capital punishment laws will be introduced, including death by stoning or flogging of LGBT people.
“According to the Tánaiste, the Attorney General would be attending the event in a private capacity. However, the attendee list includes former Attorney Generals and a High Court Judge. It is clear that the Attorney General has been invited by virtue of his current position. In a letter to an Taoiseach, I have called on him to request that the Attorney General not attend the event. There is also an ongoing boycott of the Dorchester Hotel and page 144 of the Programme for Government commits to protecting and promoting human rights.”
Since the new laws were enacted, Brunei has faced considerable backlash from the European Union and Amnesty International. A number of MPs in the UK have called for Brunei to be removed from the Commonwealth.
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