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18 Nov 2010

Sexual orientation removed from UN resolution condemning unjustified executions

The amendment narrowly passed 79-70 reversing the 2008 declaration that included an explicit reference to killings committed because of the victims' sexual orientation. IGLHRC reports.

The IGLHRC issued a statement on Nov 17, 2010:

The International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission (IGLHRC) and ARC International are deeply disappointed with yesterday’s vote in the Third Committee of the United Nations General Assembly to remove a reference to sexual orientation from a resolution on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions. The resolution urges States to protect the right to life of all people, including by calling on states to investigate killings based on discriminatory grounds. For the past 10 years, the resolution has included sexual orientation in the list of discriminatory grounds on which killings are often based.

The removed reference was originally contained in a non-exhaustive list in the resolution highlighting the many groups of people that are particularly targeted by killings - including persons belonging to national or ethnic, religious and linguistic minorities, persons acting as human rights defenders (such as lawyers, journalists or demonstrators) as well as street children and members of indigenous communities. Mentioning sexual orientation as a basis on which people are targeted for killing highlights a situation in which particular vigilance is required in order for all people to be afforded equal protection.

The amendment removing the reference to sexual orientation was sponsored by Benin on behalf of the African Group in the UN General Assembly and was adopted with 79 votes in favor, 70 against, 17 abstentions and 26 absent. 

"This vote is a dangerous and disturbing development,” said Cary Alan Johnson, Executive Director of IGLHRC. “It essentially removes the important recognition of the particular vulnerability faced by lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people - a recognition that is crucial at a time when 76 countries around the world criminalize homosexuality, five consider it a capital crime, and countries like Uganda are considering adding the death penalty to their laws criminalizing homosexuality." 

This decision in the General Assembly flies in the face of the overwhelming evidence that people are routinely killed around the world because of their actual or perceived sexual orientation and renders these killings invisible or unimportant. The Special Rapporteur on Extrajudicial, Summary or Arbitrary Executions has highlighted documented cases of extrajudicial killings on the grounds of sexual orientation including individuals facing the death penalty for consensual same-sex conduct; individuals tortured to death by State actors because of their actual or perceived sexual orientation; paramilitary groups killing individuals because of their actual or perceived sexual orientation as part of “social cleansing” campaigns; individuals murdered by police officers with impunity because of their actual or perceived sexual orientation; and States failing to investigate hate crimes and killings of persons because of their actual or perceived sexual orientation.

"It is a matter of great shame that the responsible Committee of the United Nations General Assembly failed in its responsibility to explicitly condemn well-documented killings based on sexual orientation," said John Fisher, Co-Director of ARC international. "The credibility of the United Nations requires protection of all persons from violations of their fundamental human rights, including on grounds of sexual orientation and gender identity. We thank those States which supported the inclusion of sexual orientation in the text, and will redouble our collective efforts to ensure that Member States of the United Nations maintain the standards they have sworn to uphold."

The amendment runs counter to other positive developments in UN and regional human rights systems where there is increased recognition of the need for protection from discrimination regardless of sexual orientation and gender identity. At a September 2010 panel held in conjunction with a session of the Human Rights Council in Geneva, UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon unequivocally recognized "the particular vulnerability of individuals who face criminal sanctions, including imprisonment and in some cases the death penalty, on the basis of their sexual orientation or gender identity."

Sixty-eight countries have also signed a joint statement in the UN General Assembly on human rights, sexual orientation and gender identity which calls for an end to "human rights violations based on sexual orientation and gender identity … in particular the use of the death penalty on this ground [and] extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions."

IGLHRC and ARC International urge all States, regardless of their vote on this amendment, to sign the UNGA joint statement affirming support of the human rights of all people, regardless of sexual orientation and gender identity and to continue in efforts to decriminalize same-sex conduct and to end other discrimination, including violence, on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity.

The votes to amend the resolution were as follows: 

In favor of the amendment to remove sexual orientation from the resolution on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions (79): 

Afghanistan, Algeria, Angola, Azerbaijan, Bahamas, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Belize, Benin, Botswana, Brunei Dar-Sala, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, China, Comoros, Congo, Cote d’Ivoire, Cuba, Democratic People's Republic of Korea, Democratic Republic of Congo, Djibouti, Egypt, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Ghana, Guyana, Haiti, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Jamaica, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Kuwait, Lebanon, Lesotho, Liberia, Libya, Madagascar, Malawi, Malaysia, Maldives, Mali, Morocco, Mozambique, Myanmar, Namibia, Niger, Nigeria, Russian Federation, Rwanda, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and Grenadines, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South Africa, Sudan, Suriname, Swaziland, Syrian Arab Republic, Tajikistan, Tunisia, Uganda, United Arab Emirates, United Republic of Tanzania, Uzbekistan, Viet Nam, Yemen, Zambia, Zimbabwe 

Opposed to the amendment to remove sexual orientation from the resolution on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions (70): 

Andorra, Argentina, Armenia, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Bhutan, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Brazil, Bulgaria, Canada, Chile, Costa Rica, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Estonia, Finland, France, Georgia, Germany, Greece, Guatemala, Hungary, Iceland, India, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Mexico, Micronesia (FS), Monaco, Montenegro, Nepal, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Poland, Portugal, Republic of Korea, Republic of Moldova, Romania, Samoa, San Marino, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Timor-Leste, Ukraine, United Kingdom, United States, Uruguay, Venezuela 

Abstain (17): 

Antigua-Barbuda, Barbados, Belarus, Cambodia, Cape Verde, Colombia, Fiji, Mauritius, Mongolia, Papau New Guinea, Philippines, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Trinidad and Tobago, Tuvalu, Vanuatu 

Absent (26): 

Albania, Bolivia, Central African Republic, Chad, Dominica, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, Gambia, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Honduras, Kiribati, Kyrgyzstan, Lao People's Democratic Republic, Marshall Island, Mauritania, Nauru, Nicaragua, Palau, Sao Tome Principe, Seychelles, Solomon Islands, Togo, Tonga, Turkey, Turkmenistan 

The mission of The International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission (IGLHRC) is advancing human rights for everyone, everywhere to end discrimination based on sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression. A non-profit, non-governmental organization, IGLHRC is based in New York, with offices in Cape Town and Buenos Aires. Visit http://www.iglhrc.org for more information.


1. 2010-11-18 20:45  
Singapore abstained from the vote. Hmm.
2. 2010-11-18 21:41  
I'm so sorry maybe I'm too tired from work, but I have no idea what this article is talking about.

Why is it bad?
3. 2010-11-18 23:38  
This is hardly news considering the way the make-up of the UN is heading. 79 bigots voted for it, 70 liberals voted against it and 43 useles b*st*rds either didn't vote or stayed away and everyone drew their day's pay, which I reckon is a pretty good day's pay. If the UN ever served a useful purpose, I'm not sure what it was or is. Perhaps someone could enlighten me.

The UN is a toothless paper tiger that presents it's self as some champion of human rights, but in fact has no power if a country decides not to follow their flimsey guidlines and rules. Bottom line? The UN is a waste of time and money.

4. 2010-11-19 00:44  
Why the UN had chosen to pass this voting in the first place surprised me more than the fact that Indonesia voted for it.
回应#5於於2010-11-19 01:48被作者删除。
回应#6於於2010-11-19 01:44被作者删除。
7. 2010-11-19 01:47  
One of the main reason why the criteria of sexual orientation removed from the UN is due to religion. If you pay close attention, most of those 79 countries who voted to lift the ban majority are country with islam as their major state religions.

i'm NOT surprised to find out my country , Indonesia has taken the vote to lift the ban.... there's a rising trend of extreme islamist in my country...

HOWEVER.. i am ASHAMED to my fellow country man who sit there at the UN! Those representatives of my country are truly ignorant on the fact that this vote would lead to disastrous consequences and also a direct violation on human rights .. didn't those so called religious muslim countries does not recognize there are also GAY muslim?

i'm not saying this because i hate islam or muslim people... i'm saying this because i am a muslim and lives in Indonesia, that's why i know what really happened in my country and i do know there are lots of gay who is also muslim and live a decent and honest life here in Indonesia.

hatred and ignorance .. shame on them, and they called themselves as advocate of humanity.. shame on them
8. 2010-11-19 02:13  
I, 100% agree with ThayT. UN is useless.
回应#9於於2010-11-19 03:02被作者删除。
回应#10於於2010-11-19 06:06被作者删除。
11. 2010-11-19 04:29  
12. 2010-11-19 05:57  
This is outrageous! How just 1 much less 79 "civilized" governments can agree that it's OK to kill GLBT citizens is beyond my understanding.
13. 2010-11-19 06:05  
I am quite shocked at some of the member-countries' responses.

A) Of those which supported the amendment:
1- China and Vietnam: which don't have anti-sodomy laws shouldn't have supported it
2- South Africa: which also doesn't have anti-sodomy law, and which should have become a democratic nation, shouldn't have supported it
3-Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and Grenadines: of which Head of State is still the Queen of England, shouldn't have supported it.

B) To those which rejected the amendment, salute! I am impressed by conservative, landlocked Bhutan's, and by the new nation East Timor's, pro-human rights votes.

C) I am disappointed with those that abstained:
1) Philippines: whose court had just made the celebrated pro-human rights decision to allow Ang Ladlad, a gay political party, to contest its Election, should have politicians who are just as just.
2) Singapore: shame, shame. It's probably the only advanced economy in the world that still has anti-sodomy law, and which openly declared that it would not proactively enforce it because it's wrong to do so. If it's not right to enforce this law proactively, why keep it?
3) Thailand: need I say more? As a Buddhist kingdom, its politicians should know better what Compassion is. Shouldn't it support a resolution that protects against violation of human rights?

If anyone had the time to collate the HIV infection rates of these member-countries (which were invited to vote on this Amendment), we could compare the average HIV Infection Rates of these 2 groups: (1) those that rejected the amendment and (2) those that supported it, abstained or were absent. My hunch is that Group (1) would have a much lower rate, because they are taking the right approach to counter stigma, the greatest threat to HIV spread. Those countries, such as Uganda, that are led by misguided, and often corrupted, politicians, would suffer among the highest rates. Unfortunately, despite repeated calls by the international community and UN to end their discriminatory policies, they continue to self-sabotage.
14. 2010-11-19 06:33  
The next time you plan your holidays, remember that the following countries voted that unjustified executions of people based on their sexual orientation needs not be condemned:
1) China
2) South Africa
3) Indonesia (where Bali is)
4) Egypt (where Cairo and its pyramids are)
5) Malaysia
6) UAE (where Dubai is)
7) Vietnam.

Remember that the following countries didn't bother to vote to keep resolution:
1) Philippines
2) Singapore
3) Sri Lanka
4) Mongolio
5) Cambodia
6) Thailand
7) Mauritius
8) Laos
9) Turkey.

Do you want to contribute your tourist dollars to these countries?

As a Buddhist, I feel ashamed of the responses of the Buddhist-majority countries in the above lists: Thailand, Sri Lanka, Cambodia and Laos. The Buddha's teachings, regardless of Theravadin or Mahayanist interpretations, are anchored on Compassion for all. Voting to exclude any vulnerable group from this resolution, or doing nothing to protect them from unjustified murder, is a stark disregard of the Buddha's teachings. Shame on you.
15. 2010-11-19 07:36  
The results are daunting... but needless to say, UN is just a forum to show country loyalties and political stands... it was never really a human rights move...

like what danielmcool mention... one of the reason being religion. Other smaller countries merely follow the votes of the bigger countries that overlook them... it's like that movie "The Cove"... people don't vote out of compassion etc, they vote out of personal gain, their own benefits in mind... well at least most of those idiotic 79 countries did...

shame is the right word...
16. 2010-11-19 07:48  
this is very much related to a newly passed laws in uganda where being homosexual will be automatically mean public hanging. it is enough to be reported by anyone and there you go, the near-by tree or pole will do. UN doesnt wanna bother with ugandan authorities and also some others who ar accepting such moronic laws - this way it will be their legislative and totally recognized right to rule in their country as they please. UN... the slave and extended arm of those who bring wars and hunger to the world under the mask of helping them.
17. 2010-11-19 08:43  
Yes, this is very much about religion, Islam to be specific because it is only Muslim majority countries that thus far have the death penalty for same sex sexual activity.

Countries that abstained, like pathetic Singapore, have done so for fear of angering the Islamofascists who make spurious and debatable claims that Islam gives its practioners no choice but to impose the death penalty on those who engage in same sex sexual activity.

However, in the case of Singapore, it's stand is not inconsistent with its stand on the death penalty in general; fascists LOVE the death penalty because by criminalizing others to the extreme as only they can, they successfully distract everyone from their own criminal excesses.


I work in alliance with the Singapore Anti-Death Penalty Campaign (SADPC). I believe that it is time for those of us in relatively more privileged cicumstances where LGBT issues are concerned to treat the death penalty as an LGBT issue.
修改於2010-11-19 08:49:21
18. 2010-11-19 09:42  
How can South Africa vote for it when they allow Gay Marriages?? Is that an error?

Anyway obviously the first group is just a huge group of loser states where all the citizens have almost no rights anyway.. such a sad world sometimes with all these people.
19. 2010-11-19 10:14  
this is so sickening... sure am, my country will never criminalize homosexuality, and i am glad i was born here despite poverty.
20. 2010-11-19 17:15  
this is really just too much, so now the UN has deteriorated even further and gives tacit support to the targeting and execution of homosexual males, the UN is a standing impotent joke but unfortunately it's just not really funny, it's time Australia and others dumped it.
Israel is a prime example of another UN failure as Arab dictatorhips and their fellow travellers use the UN to lambast Democratic Israels justified security measures and attempts to reclaim their traditional lands (like east Jerusalem) from intransigent murderous Arab settlers, I'm all for ceasing trade and economic support to non-Democratic and oppressive Governments so their people end up rebelling against them and billing the UN for the housing and processing of all the economic refugees that is costing the Australian taxpayers billions I'm also for funding and promoting military training of Democratic freedom movements to over throw these oppressive feudal kingdoms & dictatorships just as the Israelis managed to do, so at least the Kurds, East Papuans, Tibetins, East Turkestan, Burmese, Thais and others shackled can at least put up a good fight to attain their freedom rather than live eternally imprisoned because the UN is failing them and western so called Democratic nations are too cowardly to speak up, the UN it's just a big status quo paper tiger who is sliding into complicity with genocide, it's time homosexual men stopped pansying their butts down the main streets in sham 'queer' parades and got serious about attaining real freedom and if that means joining or funding actual guerilla liberation movements so be it
修改於2010-11-19 18:07:28
21. 2010-11-19 18:29  
Ironic that South Africa should vote for removal when IGLHRC has offices in Cape Town

Well now, at least, I have a complete no-go country list.
22. 2010-11-19 18:45  
My speculation is correct. Year 2011 will be the worst year in human history for gays and lesbians, just like year 1944 is the worst year for the Jews where many of them died in the holocaust and just like year 1975 is the worst year for the Chinese in the Mainland in the cultural revolution. But just like year 1945 is a happy year for the Jews when the war ended, and year 1976 is a happy year for the Chinese when Mao was dead and ended the cultural revolution, will year 2012 be the happy year for gays and lesbians?

Three years after 1945, 1948 is a breakthrough year for the Jews where they have a home and formed a new state in Israel. Two years after 1976, 1978 is a breakthrough year for the Chinese when they started to have economic reforms and since then they have economic boom and is becoming a great modern State. Will three years later be a breakthrough for gays and lesbians, when there is a complete cure for HIV and gay and lesbians be able to hold hands publicly and get married to the same gender?

The Jews and homosexuals suffer alike because Jesus is both a Jew and Queer. The Chinese suffer because the three wise men from the East are Chinese, and likewise partake in the suffering of Christ.

No servant is greater than his Master! If his Master suffers, he will suffers like Him!

Just too bad that we are born in the wrong era, just like the Jews born in the 1930s in Europe and the Chinese born in the Mainland in the 1950s.
23. 2010-11-19 19:23  
This is yet another example of why Islam is a dangerous religion
24. 2010-11-19 19:29  
So perhaps the 70 countries in favor should smell the roses... what is the influence behind the Caribbean vote? Behind the Sth African vote?

Of those 79 countries, how many follow WTO regulations... and the Russian Federation's President and Prime Minister just used the word "mercado" do describe that the Russian colonel who told the U.S. about Russia's 10 sleepers/spies in the U.S. would be hunted down and murdered... extra-judicial murders of gays is one thing... how about state sponsored murders, declared in the newspapers?

Has much changed from the 1960's/70's until now for some of these despot countries?

I agree that boycotting countries AND telling them we're doing this, will send a message... but China and economics play a disastrous role in the lead on morality. We need to future our own world... the U.N. won't do it... think Bosnia... think Rwanda... think gays...
25. 2010-11-19 21:50  
agreed and copy and paste here:

I agree that boycotting countries AND telling them we're doing this, will send a message... but China and economics play a disastrous role in the lead on morality. We need to future our own world... the U.N. won't do it... think Bosnia... think Rwanda... think gays...
26. 2010-11-19 23:17  
NO the truth is in 1948 the modern day Hebrew people had fought and won to ressurrect their ancient home land (Judah) as the Modern state of Israel, 'Palestine' was always the rightful home of the Hebrew people Jerusalem it's rightful capital and like Australias Indiginous people they had never signed away their right to return or reclaim their Tribal/Ancestral lands even though foriegn settlers had appropriated it.
What is curious is the ANC Government has now expediently betrayed homosexual people after so many of us had supported their struggle and in South Africa many were in alliance with the ANC, Nelson Mandella is considered a grand statesman who brought his people to freedom but nobel peace prize aside remember he NEVER signed away the right for his people to take up arms to secure that freedom, it was fortunate they avoided a blood bath as the apartheit Government saw the writing on the wall and negotiated a peaceful settlement, Pagan people are ready to defend them selves against any attempt by christians to once again subjugate them (no more the burning times) so also must GLBT people be ready in defence of liberty if preferable peaceful means fail, we are global and could strike any time if we were sufficiently trained and financed could act decisively against those who would persecute or deny us liberty, hell the CIA do it the Russians do it, the radical Islamists & communists do it christians do it do it (more recently termination clinics) so why not us? in Australia as a result of the 1854 Eureka uprising the process of the Democratisation of our continent began and like the USA whose desire for freedom arose from Rebellion and armed insurrection is also historical fact, we should honour and find courage in historical truth and from the Israeli experience we can know a few determined souls with a desire to survive and thrive can out smart and over come a greater beligerent force and like wise carve out a place for our selves in a world that is often consideredand hostile the free movement of Homosexuals to safe havens must be allowed. of course the preference to a peaceful transition to liberty and Democracy is preferable but not always is it an option offered by others ask the Bosnians as NATO's military intervention was the only option left
修改於2010-11-19 23:26:57
27. 2010-11-20 07:01  
@aztlan_oz, you mentioned:

"...western so called Democratic nations are too cowardly to speak up..."

One likely reason for that is the Western nations that you refer to have been successfully guilted by the many charges of racism levelled against them whenever they have stood up to human rights violations internationally.

It is based on the simplistic argument that the purported reason for what are really human rights violations are rooted in 'our' cultures. Oppose them, and if you are white you would be accused of being insensitive to 'our' cultures and thus racist.

Singapore led that charge way back when, but it was only when Muslim countries and especially China took up that line that the western world sat up and took notice. Africans have also joined in that fray.

This phenomenon of guilting - and feeling guilty - does have to be pointed out for any movement towards the restoration of human rights in violating countries.
修改於2010-11-20 07:02:38
回应#28於於2010-11-20 07:04被作者删除。
29. 2010-11-20 07:05  
I think boycotting alone may not be the best solution, because it's the people and businessmen who'd suffer, not the real culprits. The real culprits are the politicians, who, in many of these states, aren't elected. Take the case of China or North Korea, for example. Do the majority of the people support the communist parties? So, I think that beside reducing contribution of our Pink Dollars, there are 3 things we must do:
1) To state WHY we are doing so. There are many ways to do so. You can, at an individual level, mention in your blog or Facebook that you will, for example, skip going to China or North Korea for holidays for 3 years BECAUSE of their vote against this Resolution. At a higher level, you can educate your friends who are concerned why they might want to do likewise. And, if you are truly angry, you could write their Tourism Board or Tourism Minister (e.g. Malaysia has one) to express your animosity.

2) Feedback to their stakeholders in the tourism industry. Examples are their associations for hotels, restaurants, shopping centres, etc. that tend to benefit from tourism.

3) The best way to deal with these politicians is through education. By educating more people about the importance of human rights, democracy and accountability, we can raise awareness on the ground gradually so that the voters/citizens will make the right decision when the time comes for them to choose their leaders, be it with their ballots or another means.
30. 2010-11-20 07:08  
Inspired by sunthenmoon's post above, on behalf of the Singapore Tourism Board, I am designating every year Don't Visit Singapore Year.

Every year that is until full rights to LGBTs are instated.
31. 2010-11-20 07:50  
any uplifting articles this weekend for gay men and awesome lesbians or just more political ranting? gosh, even Rachael Maddow would laugh at this stuff

when did being gay mean having to be so political? executions? who even reads this stuff except Alex Au / Percole?

boycott singapore? has this guy gone completely nuts?

Is this what being gay is really about? just a political activity and rights?

Can't Fridae go back to its core and right some nice stories about romance and love instead of political struggle, sex in parks, BJs in dirty toilets and inciting political strife in the gay community?

gosh, again the feelings of gay men that really love life and the pulse of Singapore despite the politics are really crushed and hurt

Who the heck would be so anti-gay that they don't want people to visit Singapore? its pretty offensive

Gay men are generous and gracious and not bitter old kooks like Percole. We like it here and are role models in our jobs and professions and people respect us cause we are success.

Rights will come when people respect us and although the struggle is long, we have to work together to over come the negative behavior of a few individiuals and gay poltiical activists that are giving us a bad name and reputation. GLADD awards are given to people that promote a positive image in our community, period. (I have never seen a lawyer win one, though).

Gosh, I just want to be gay and have fun and I do have rights when I am well behaved. Singapore is not perfect, but does anyone know the tax rates for married gay couple in Canada (its awful).

The straight and gay community needs to see 377a abolished in the name of love and meaningful relationships and cause gay dads/ moms are very capable care givers.

Where is Singapore's Theodore Olsen making relevent and beautiful legal agruements on the sanctity of gay rights and marriage.

Instead, this is another example of misguided lawyers splitting fine hairs, stirring up discontent in the gay community, losing their message and audience and thinking there is some conspiracy out there. (Well, maybe my gay Stephen Hawking geeky gay fan club is working a bit overtime these days trying to find God in some galaxy far away).

The Christians have their distractions with that idiot Rory Tan but unfortunately, our gay community has a few nutty leaders distracting us from being united with uplifting and strongly inspirational messages based on the premise that we are cool and awesome and unique.

So guys be happy and successful and invite your boyfriends to come to Singapore for the weekend and to stay and love and be happy. Heck, I will even throw a classy party and invite everyone over to watch some hot guys in white jeans play polo.

so thanks to all the hotties supporting Lagunabro out there (the positive comments in my mailbox are now exploding, especially from lesbians mothers-- thanks for our shared interests in cooking and the Indigo girls). and you guys go buy a guy dinner before you have sex, spending more time kissing and spooning than fucking, hold hands in public, and remember gay romance is back big time in Singapore:)

32. 2010-11-20 14:07  
How sad! As for sunthenmoons comment, very true! Let your dollars do the Voting!
33. 2010-11-20 14:08  
Terrific. Now I know where to spend my money and what narrow minded countries to avoid.
34. 2010-11-20 15:28  
It's shocking to see South Africa voted to remove the reference to sexual orientation when Post-apartheid constitution protects sexual orientation. And then there's the abstention of Thailand and the Philippines. Philippines in particular you'd think the new administration would do something after plenty of killings in the past administration.

this is not even an issue of sexual minority rites or religious or traditional conservative 'values', extra-judicial killing is wrong in every sense! It is black and white, as clear as day and night!
35. 2010-11-20 20:23  
Beside the dollars, remember to send in your feedback as our valued customers. Tourists are classified as our customers because tourism is a major industry in Singapore (and in many other countries). I think, with more complaints from the "Angmohs" (Westerners), our govt's attitude towards gays should change. Your words carry more weight because our govt is eager to woo "foreign talents", tourists and investors. So if you personally feel that you don't feel as welcome in Singapore as you'd expected, for whatever reasons (e.g. 377a, restrictions on gay topics in the mainstream media, ban on gay events), do feedback to the Tourism Board, chambers of commerce, associations representing businesses in the tourism industry, etc.. As your "angmoh" letters pile up, the people on top would be more likely to reconsider their stance. They'd get the hint that to become a truly global city they cannot behave like 3rd world nations. In fact, Singapore should be THE ONLY "advanced" country in IMF's list of 34 Advanced Economies (page 26 of http://www.imf.org/external/pubs/ft/weo/2010/02/pdf/c4.pdf ) that still has anti-sodomy laws. This distinction is ridiculous because England, from which we adopted our present legal system, together with the others in this list that had similarly adopted English law (i.e. Aust, NZ, Canada), had already repealed their anti-sodomy laws. The other Advanced Economies in Asia--Taiwan, HK, Japan and Korea--don't have anti-sodomy laws too. There is no reason to think that Singapore is more 'conservative' than these Advanced Economies. These countries had not turned into "Wild, Wild West" without 377a equivalents. Of course, neither have their straight men all turned gay or their school boys been subjected to significantly higher risk of being molested by men because of the absence of anti-sodomy law. The arguments put forth by the anti-gay camp are, hence, groundless.
36. 2010-11-21 23:21  
Disappointed that Malaysia voted in favour of this amendment. :-(
37. 2010-11-23 19:37  
QUALITY OF THIS ARTICLE: It is great that Fridae include articles like this but I think they need to be sub-edited and put into English parlance comprehensible by most members of Fridae. Many are not native English speakers and the article is just dreadfully written in its pedantic detail. One of the earlier comments was that he could not understand the story. It is indeed an important story with many Asian-references but the whole is lost in the drivel of Eurospeak.
38. 2010-11-23 21:15  
Percole, I understand your point here but I donot excuse the ' free Wests' failure to act so easily especially given the betrayal of the values I was brought up to believe in, I have lived long enough to see the unfortunate hypocrisy and failure to act morally of the so called 'free west' in favour of business and profit over Democracy and individual liberty, my own country being a prime shameful example of that betrayal, think East Timore (Timor Leste) Australia sucking up to the Indonesian dictatorhip while the Timorese people were hostage like the Tibetins and being bullied and bled to death, Labor and Coalition Governments alike have that blood of the Timorese people on their hands, also the indecent indifference while Aung San Suu Kyi imprisoned and the Burmese people have been subjected to years of abuse by their military Junta
39. 2010-11-23 22:50  
South Africa.... Cry the Beloved Country!
40. 2010-11-24 12:38  
@Thameswalk: You made a valid point. I think there's an alternative to what you suggested that kills 2 birds with 1 stone. Fridae could add a Summary in bullet points for all future articles which are harder to comprehend.

For example, for this particular article, the points might be:
1) There was a vote by countries who are members of the United Nations (UN) to amend an existing Resolution (Statement of Opinion or Position) of the UN. The amendment is solely on removing "sexual orientation" as a "discriminatory ground" in that Resolution.
2) The Resolution asks countries to protect human lives by investigating killings based on discriminatory grounds. One of the "discriminatory grounds" include "sexual orientation". In other words, homosexuality is recognised as a "discriminatory ground" in the Resolution.
3) The amendment was asked for by a group of African countries.
4) The results of the vote: 79 voted for amendment, 70 voted against amendment, 17 did not want to vote and 26 were absent. The list of countries and their responses are found in the article.
5) So, "sexual orientation" was successfully removed from the list of "discriminatory grounds" in that Resolution.
6) International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission (IGLHRC) and ARC International expressed disappointment with the vote and its results.

I think Fridae would make it easier for readers to understand articles like this if the above bullet points are provided on top of such articles. Additionally, Fridae's editors do not need to spend long hours to rewrite entire articles.
41. 2010-11-24 19:11  
This is indeed a VERY DANGEROUS and DESPICABLE Development
Anyone who can be TARGETED FOR KILLING, on the Basis
of Being a Gay or Suspected of Being a Gay.

Such an Convenient Way of getting Rid of One's Enemies
Or Whoever is Blocking in the way of the SELFISH interests
of the DESPICABLE and INHUMANE individuals.
42. 2010-11-25 10:52  
At this point, I feel so ashamed being a citizen of Indonesia that took part of the group of the 79 countries that are for the removal of sexual orientation.
43. 2010-11-25 20:34  
We all know UN is nothing but a place where the political games are engaged in.Recall those days when USA didn't get approval but insisted going ahead,invading Iraq,therefore to the truth we dont care much about it except for playing.
Is it bad to the vote,yes! but if we PLU over-react to it it seems to me those are doing something bad,but we,taking tit for tat,make it worse.It, in addition ,shows that we are weak to some degree even some goverments of us can play this at the cost of us.
are we still at kingergarden,like boycotting Singapore and provoking countrymen to overthrow their governments.I know in Singapore they apprarnatly have section 337a, making it look pretty grim ,but in reality those no doubt will never be excuated,and thus it doesnt mean our government vote it Yes and they have 337A,PLUs share less freedom in terms of gay rights.
I do strongly believe we plu need to hear ( and they) more positive news ,like love story of us,coming out of those heros and our daily life, and they are so lacking that some of us get pathetic about happening around us.
44. 2010-11-27 17:33  
This is utter bullshit! But... the way of the world.... two steps forward... one back. It sucks though... it really sucks. :-(
45. 2010-12-05 21:11  
UN is actually strained by those big names, they're not representing everyone in their native country, so I also NOT surprised to obtain the news.



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