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Nov-30-2010 18:09printcomments

U.N. Fails to Protect Sexual Minorities

Homosexuality is criminalized in dozens of countries across the world—and a source of violence in many more.

Gay bashing

(WASHINGTON D.C.) - Recently, the U.N. removed a critical protection for sexual minorities. Homosexuality is criminalized in dozens of countries across the world. Homophobic violence is rampant in many more.

What's going on?

This week Secretary Clinton will head to Kazakhstan to meet with dozens of foreign leaders at an international summit—help us urge her to fight for greater protection of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people.

WikiLeaks aftermath aside, she'll have a full agenda—and we want to make sure human rights—and gay rights particularly—don't take a backseat at this meeting on security.

The first Summit in 11 years for the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), this is a critical opportunity to address violations of human dignity and fundamental freedoms against LGBT individuals across Europe, North America, and the former Soviet Union. It is an important forum to discuss human rights concerns and urge participating states to act—now even more so given the recent backlash against LGBT rights in other international arenas such as the U.N.

International pressure is critical to fighting the discrimination and violence suffered daily by LGBT people. We can't let this persecution be condoned or ignored by states and international institutions—help us urge action NOW to protect LGBT people at risk of violence.

Last year, with your help we blocked a bill in Uganda that would've made homosexuality punishable by death—but news reports show it's resurfacing. There and elsewhere sexual minorities are being beaten, killed, and harassed. We've got to step up our efforts to protect the human rights of lesbian, gay, and other sexual minorities wherever they're at risk.

This Summit presents an opportunity to influence some 65 world leaders, including the U.N. and NATO Secretary Generals, to act against homophobic violence and discrimination. Help us stand up for the human dignity and fundamental freedoms of LGBT—and all—individuals.


Paul LeGendre is the Director of the Fighting Discrimination Program

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