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‘Gays Should Be Beaten’ MP Rebuked by Albanian PM

‘Gays Should Be Beaten’ MP Rebuked by Albanian PM

 

Albania’s Prime Minister on Monday rebuked a Cabinet member for recent comments the lawmaker made that gay citizens hoping to hold their first ever Pride celebration in the country “should be beaten with a rubber stick.”

Reports the Washington Post:

Prime Minister Sali Berisha called the remarks by Deputy Defense Minister Ekrem Spahiu “unacceptable.”

[...]

Albanian gay rights groups are planning to celebrate the International Day Against Homophobia on May 17 in the capital, Tirana. The groups have demanded Spahiu that be prosecuted under anti-discrimination laws but the small monarchist party that Spahiu heads backed him, issuing a statement describing homosexuality as a “vice, misfortune and a curse.”

On March 22, 2012, Spahiu told the Albanian newspaper Gazeta Shqiptarein, in response to a question about a pride parade on the International Day against Homophobia and Transphobia, that he opposed the plans, saying:

“What remains to be done is to beat them up with a stick. If you don’t understand this, I can explain it: to beat them with a rubber stick.”

Albania’s Ombudsman, Igli Totzani, condemned the remarks, saying they contradicted “the spirit of tolerance, coexistence and diversity as the traditional values ​​ofAlbanian society,” and that they “incite violence and hatred, constituting also a criminal act.”

Similarly, international human rights groups hit out at Minister Spahiu’s remarks, with the group Human Rights Watch saying:

“I am shocked that a high ranking government official is calling for violence against peaceful LGBT demonstrators,” said Boris Dittrich, advocacy director in the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender (LGBT) Rights Program at Human Rights Watch. “Government officials should be supporting plans to hold a Gay Pride parade, not making threats against the participants.”

Forty-eight Albanian non-governmental organizations also condemned Spahiu’s comments, saying that protecting gay rights is “a fundamental condition in the road of European Union integration.”

The Albanian government has made broad and significant steps toward institutionalizing tolerance for LGBT rights. These include passing an LGBT-inclusive nondiscrimination law, and on March 31, 2010, having agreed to the recommendations of the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe when it adopted nondiscrimination provisions regarding sexual orientation and gender identity.

 

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Image used under the MorgueFile user license with thanks to mconnors.

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22 comments

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1:53AM PDT on May 14, 2013

He should be beaten with a rubber stick instead.

8:37PM PDT on May 12, 2013

What, he's their Defense Minister? Why is he in that position? He is supposed to help prevent violence, yet he promotes it. Stupid hypocrite. Let's beat him with a rubber stick instead.

7:02PM PDT on Mar 30, 2012

Deputy Defense Minister Ekrem Spahiu can be beaten by a rubber stick instead, the stupid pig!

9:35PM PDT on Mar 29, 2012

How indeed is this man still Defence Minister. LGBTQ people ensure enough harassment and violence without someone in this man's positions giving it the "ok".

8:15PM PDT on Mar 28, 2012

Good thing someone else in their government knew this is bad.

7:33PM PDT on Mar 28, 2012

I am very impressed with the replies against violence!

7:03PM PDT on Mar 28, 2012

I am sure there are some in Albania that would beat stupid politicians with a rubber stick too.

11:29AM PDT on Mar 28, 2012

So why is he still Deputy Defense Minister?

10:11AM PDT on Mar 28, 2012

Daniel A

I was going to send you a green star til I saw this:--

"hate groups like Hezbolla, the Brotherhood, Hamas"

Hezbollah and Hamas are not hate groups. They are patriotic resistance groups. The Brothers contain loons, but the people directing them in Egypt, at least, are pragmatic and open to the West.

10:10AM PDT on Mar 28, 2012

Daniel A

I was going to send you a green star til I saw this:--

"hate groups like Hezbolla, the Brotherhood, Hamas"

Hezbollah and Hamas are not hate groups. They are patriotic resistance groups. The Brothers contain loons, but the people directing them in Egypt, at least, are pragmatic and open to the West.

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