UN backs gay rightsJune 18th, 2011 - 5:49 pm ICT by IANS
Gineva, June 18 (IANS) The UN has passed a resolution endorsing the rights of gay, lesbian and transgender people, a media report said Saturday.
The US has hailed the Friday’s endorsement as historic but African and Muslim countries criticised it.
The declaration was cautiously worded expressing “grave concern” about abuses because of sexual orientation, the China Daily reported.
Activists called it a major shift on an issue that has divided the global organisations for decades, and they credited the Obama administration’s push for gay rights at home and abroad.
“This represents a historic moment to highlight the human rights abuses and violations that lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people face around the world based solely on who they are and whom they love,” US Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton said in a statement.
Following tense negotiations, members of the Geneva-based UN Human Rights Council voted 23 in favour of the declaration and 19 against. It was put forward by South Africa.
Backers included the US, the European Union, Brazil and other Latin American countries. Those against included Russia, Saudi Arabia, Nigeria and Pakistan. China, Burkina Faso and Zambia abstained, Kyrgyzstan didn’t vote and Libya was suspended from the rights body earlier.
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