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UN hails ‘ground-breaking’ Supreme Court ruling to decriminalize gay sex in India

The rainbow flag, commonly known as the LGBTIQ pride flag.
The rainbow flag, commonly known as the LGBTIQ pride flag. photo credit: ILO
A landmark ruling in India that decriminalizes gay sex has been welcomed as a “ground-breaking decision” by the UN agency leading the fight against HIV/AIDS.

India’s Supreme Court on Thursday struck down a key section of a colonial-era law which made specific sexual acts between adults illegal.

“Today is a day of gay pride, a day of celebration, a day when respect and dignity was finally restored in India for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) people,” 

“I hope this decision sets the trend and is followed by similar decisions in other countries that remove unjust laws criminalizing homosexuality.”

...Michel Sidibé, Executive Director of UNAIDS

UN Secretary-General António Guterres also welcomed the decision by India’s highest court, applauding the verdict of the Chief Justice, who said that discrimination and prejudice are always “irrational, indefensible, and arbitrary.”

The UN system in India expressed hope that it will boost efforts to stamp out stigma and discrimination against LGBTI people, which violates their human rights.

The UN office in Delhi issued a statementwhich stressed that “focus must now be on ensuring access to justice, including remedy; effective investigations of acts of violence and discrimination; and effective access to economic, social and cultural rights.”

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