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Violence and discrimination against LGBT people worldwide

Urgent action needed to stop violence and discrimination against LGBT people worldwide, says UN expert

GENEVA (18 June 2018) – States around the world must take urgent action to eradicate violence and discrimination against LGBT people, a UN expert has said in his first official address to the Human Rights Council in Geneva.

“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,” said Victor Madrigal-Borloz, the UN’s new Independent Expert on protection against violence and discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity.

“Denying this fact is offensive to the dignity of those targeted, as well as the global conscience. Opposition to taking action to protect them defies logic and any justification,” he stressed.

Madrigal-Borloz said deeply entrenched stigma and prejudice reinforced by discriminatory laws and regulations were at the root of violence and discrimination.

“No State or region of the world is spared from this scourge,” he said.

“More than three billion people, almost half of the world’s population, live in countries in which the law or other measures criminalize some citizens on the basis of sexual orientation. So, recognizing the problem and adopting effective measures to address it does make a significant difference,” he added.

“The Universal Declaration of Human Rights makes clear that freedom, justice and peace in the world rest on the recognition of the inherent dignity and equality of all members of the human family,” emphasized Madrigal-Borloz.

“I urge all members in the community of nations to hear the testimony of people who are targeted, and take action. If you listen, you will hear them calling for the conscience of humankind to be outraged in the face of their pain and suffering,” he said.

ENDS

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