UNGA vote restores gay clause in human rights resolution

UNGA vote restores gay clause in human rights resolution

At its meeting today the UN General Assembly voted 93 in favour of the proposal, with 55 countries voting against and 27 abstaining.

India voted in favour of the resolution that was moved by the United States.
The amendment sought to acknowledge that all persons had the right to be free from extrajudicial killings, including those targeted because of their sexual orientation.
The controversial clause had been removed last month at the instance of some Arab and African members.

On November 16, the General Assembly's Third Committee voted by a narrow margin to eliminate any mention of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender individuals from a resolution condemning extrajudicial killing of vulnerable people around the world, creating lot of opposition by human rights bodies.

President Obama applauds those countries that supported the amendment offered by the US to ensure that "sexual orientation" remains covered by the United Nations resolution on extrajudicial, summary, and arbitrary execution, the White House said in a statement.

"Killing people because of their sexual orientation cannot be rationalised by diverse religious values or varying regional perspectives. Killing people because they are gay is not culturally defensible – it is criminal," it said.

Noting that protecting homosexual, bisexual, and transgender people from state-sponsored discrimination is a human right, the White House said the vote marks an important moment in the struggle for civil and human rights.

"The United States introduced this language to send an unequivocal message in concert with our many international partners: No one should be killed for who they are," Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said.

The United Nations General Assembly has sent a clear and resounding message that justice and human rights apply to all individuals regardless of their sexual orientation, said US Ambassador to the UN Susan Rice.

Speaking before the vote, Belgium's representative said on behalf of the European Union that his delegation opposed all forms of discrimination and that 'LGBT' people had the same rights as all peoples.

Canada's representative said his delegation was deeply concerned by continued killings all over the world that were based on gender and sexual identity, as well as by continued discrimination