“So long as people face criminalization, bias, and violence based on their sexual orientation, gender identity, or sex characteristics we must redouble our efforts to end these violations.”
Guterres spoke about the fight for LGBT+ rights worldwide at the United Nations General Assembly in New York City this week, stating that the UN will “never give up the fight until everyone can live free and equal in dignity and rights.”
.@UN Secretary-General @antonioguterres: “The United Nations stands up for the rights of the LGBTI community – and will never give up the fight until everyone can live free and equal in dignity and rights.”#StandUp4HumanRights #LGBTI #UNGA #UNGA2018 pic.twitter.com/DLQy8AjOeZ
— UN Free & Equal (@free_equal) September 25, 2018
UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet echoed the Secretary-General’s message, saying “It should be obvious that there are many different ways to be a human being.”
Bachelet continued, “We need to respect and embrace these differences – not criminalize them, not attack people, not deprive them of equal rights or the protection of the law, just because they are seen as different.”
According to Victor Madrigal-Borloz, The United Nation’s independent expert on sexual orientation and gender identity, every day “millions of lesbians, gays, bisexual, trans and other gender non-conforming people, are subjected to acts of great cruelty based solely on who they are or who they choose to love or desire,” including killings, violent attacks, torture, prison sentences, forced marriages, denial of rights, medical violence and discrimination in access to healthcare.
During the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender/Transsexual and Intersex Core Group Event as part of the General Assembly, Michelle Bachelet urged that there “should be nothing ‘controversial’ about stopping people being murdered, or executed by agents of the State, simply because of who they are or whom they love.”
Bachelet praised the recent historical ruling in India which decriminalised homosexuality in the country, but also noted that many of the world’s nations have a long way to go in terms of LGBT+ rights:
“Most countries do not track homophobic and transphobic crimes. The result is impunity.”
Also speaking at the event was National Geographic photographer Robin Hammond, who recently worked on a photo-series called Where Love Is Illegal, which looked at the discrimination of LGBT+ people in countries like Kenya, Ghana, Brazil, Jamaica and Iran.
“Inaction means death,” insisted Hammond.
“How many more must be raped and mutilated and murdered before we can say never again?” the photographer asked.
© 2018 GCN (Gay Community News). All rights reserved.
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