2010 07 01
By The European Parliament’s Intergroup on LGBT Rights
BRUSSELS, 1 July 2010 — At today’s parliamentary hearing on the sexual abuse of children, organised in the European Parliament by the European People’s Party (EPP), individual right-wing MEPs expressed the view that paedophilia was connected to homosexuality.
Vytautas Landsbergis, EPP Member of the European Parliament for Lithuania and a former Head of the Lithuanian Parliament, said there was a connection between homosexuality and paedophilia. Children should therefore be protected from “homosexual propaganda” and “homophilic [sic] paedophilia”, he added. Cecilia Malmström, European Commissioner for Home Affairs, responded that such claims were unfounded, and that the European Commission condemns discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation.
Anna Záborská, EPP Member of the European Parliament for Slovakia, made a further remark on “adult men abusing young boys”.
Ulrike Lunacek MEP, Co-president of the Intergroup on LGBT Rights, further added: “These colleagues are obviously not aware that top politicians in their European party such as Jerzy Buzek, Herman van Rompuy and Viviane Reding clearly condemned homophobia earlier this year. We are not afraid of the hateful rhetoric by the likes of Landsbergis and Záborská; but they should be afraid of growing out of touch with reality!”
Michael Cashman MEP, Co-president of the European Parliament’s Intergroup on LGBT Rights, reacted: “What century do these elected parliamentarians live in? Where are the studies conclusively linking homosexuality to paedophilia? These outrageous claims are blatantly false, and do nothing but stir up hatred! Landsbergis and Záborská should come out of the closet… and declare themselves as Vatican spokespeople!”
Similar comments had been made earlier this year by Tarcisio Bertone, Cardinal Secretary of State to the Vatican, who argued that “there is a relationship between homosexuality and paedophilia”.
The Intergroup on LGBT Rights unreservedly condemns paedophilia. All recognised LGBT organisations worldwide have made similar statements at the highest levels, including at the United Nations.
The European Parliament’s Intergroup on LGBT Rights:
Co -Presidents: Michael Cashman MEP (GB-S&D); Ulrike Lunacek MEP (AT-Greens)
Vice-Presidents: Sophie In’t Veld MEP (NL-ALDE); Raül Romeva i Rueda MEP (ES-Greens); Sirpa Pietikäinen MEP (FI-EPP); Rui Tavares MEP (PT-GUE)
Press contact: Bruno Selun, Secretary; email@example.com; +32 (0) 228 37 759