News World More European politicians found using homophobic hate speech

More European politicians found using homophobic hate speech

Homophobic language and hate speech against transgender people are on the increase among European politicians, an advocacy group said on Tuesday as it sounded the alarm about a backlash against LGBT+ rights in the region.

Politicians in 17 countries in Europe and Central Asia – including Estonia, Finland and Italy – have verbally attacked LGBT+ people over the past year, according to an annual report by ILGA-Europe.

The findings come as the COVID-19 pandemic takes a heavy toll on LGBT+ people, from trapping the young at home with homophobic families during lockdowns to politicians targeting gay and trans people to shift attention from economic problems.

“LGBTI communities are amongst the groups that get scapegoated in particular,” said Evelyne Paradis, ILGA-Europe’s executive director.

“There’s growing hate speech specifically targeting trans people and that is being reported more and more across the region … We have grave concerns that it’s going to get worse before it gets better.”

The report expressed concern about developments in Poland, where nationalist ruling party politicians have criticised “LGBT ideology” during election campaigns, and Hungary, where trans people were banned last year from legally changing gender.

Elsewhere in the European Union, the situation for LGBT+ people in Bulgaria and Romania could worsen this year, Paradis said, adding that in Turkey, ruling party politicians had railed against LGBT+ people during recent protest crackdowns.

Interior Minister Suleyman Soylu referred to some of the student protesters as “LGBT deviants”, while President Tayyip Erdogan said there was “no such thing” as LGBT.

Many LGBT+ groups in Europe and Central Asia had become providers of food and other aid to their communities during the coronavirus pandemic, the ILGA-Europe report found.

“The pandemic has highlighted issues that were there but that too few of us were seeing, which is the social and economic vulnerability of a huge percentage of LGBTI people,” said Paradis.


Top Stories

Total of 298 new covid cases on Saturday, out of 45,369 tests

Health authorities in Cyprus on Saturday announced 298 new coronavirus cases out of a total of 45,369 tests carried out all across the island. The...

Where you can get a rapid test on Sunday

The Health Ministry has announced the rapid testing sites for Sunday, available for the wider population, workers and the self-employed but also for pupils...

Nicosia welcomes S&P’s affirmation of Cyprus’ “BBB-” credit rating

Finance Minister Constantinos Petrides on Saturday welcomed the affirmation by Standard & Poor’s international credit agency of Cyprus’ credit rating to "BBB-". It also...

Air France flight made emergency landing in Bulgaria over disruptive passenger

An Air France flight en route from Paris to New Delhi made an emergency landing at Sofia Airport in Bulgaria on Friday at about 5 p.m....

Italian prosecutor seeks life sentences for US students accused of killing

An Italian prosecutor on Saturday demanded life sentences for two young Americans being tried on murder charges after a policeman was killed following a...


Squash soup

Ingredients: 1 kg pumpkin, cut into small cubes, approximately 5 cups 2 medium (400g) sweet potatoes, cut into cubes, approximately 2 ½ cups 1 chopped leek, only...


No visit to Cyprus is complete without enjoying the traditional meal of many small dishes known as ‘meze’. This large feast, which has been a...

Prawns with fried cheese, barley shaped pasta

Put the barley shaped pasta into a small pan with salted water, bring to a boil and when tender, drain. Peal the prawns leaving...

Salmon and shrimp sheftalies

Mix all ingredients for tabbouli in a bowl and keep to one side so flavours can combine. Prepare the sheftalies: wash and soak the casing...