Monday, 25 January 2010

Georgia: Church inspired opposition to upcoming Council of Europe (PACE) debate on gay rights resolution

During its session on 25-29 January, the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) will debate a groundbreaking resolution on “Discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity”. [which follows a recent UN statement signed by Armenia (and Georgia too)]

There have already been church inspired voices from Georgia opposing this resolution.

Georgian Orthodox Church, Armenian Apostolic Church in Georgia, Vatican's envoy
 to Georgia, leaders of Jewish and Muslim communities in Georgia jointly 
condemned PACE’s plan to debate this resolution (Information is in Georgian language). I am amused with displays of such a unity when it comes to opposing human rights. It would have been sweet, if not so tragic and ironic. They are so out of touch with realities.

In a related development, Georgia’s Christian Democrats announced they will oppose PACE resolution. Ironically, they are members of the “Liberal fraction” in the PACE.
Georgia's Christian Democrats are to oppose proposals to protect sexual minorities when they come before the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) this week.

The party's spokesperson, and PACE member, Magda Anikashvili (pictured) said, according to "Gruzia Online", the proposals were "contrary to both our history and our spirituality."

The Christian Democrats sit in the Liberal fraction in the PACE. [...]

Georgia remains one of the most homophobic countries in Europe. It is widely believed that the current government legislated to decriminalise same sex relationships with no enthusiasm and simply to meet the criteria of the Council of Europe. The Christian Democrats, however, opposed even that and recently called for homosexuality to be recriminalised - a move that could eventually see Georgia expelled from the Council of Europe if it were ever enacted.

The Georgian police recently attacked the country's main gay rights campaign group.
I wonder how Armenian delegation will vote. Will keep an eye on developments. Armenian representatives should not follow Georgian voices in opposing this resolution, which will contradict Armenia's signatures under the UN statement and (similar in spirit) EU statements.


artmika said...

RT @demogeorgia

You can always let Mrs Anikashvili know what you think of her #homophobia by contacting her directly see #gay #tbilisi

artmika said...

With few exceptions, the debate at PACE was overall positive, but voting postponed till April.

Here is provisional edition of the transcript from the debate , and its video recording.

No representatives from Georgia, Armenia or Azerbaijan had speeches there.

artmika said...

Azeri MPs boycotted Council of Europe (PACE) gay rights debate