To please European Union, Moldova rejects anti-gay law

Location of Moldova in Europe.
Location of Moldova in Europe.

The lure of affiliation with the European Union has persuaded Moldova’s parliament in the capital city of Chisinau to cancel a new law that had banned “gay propaganda.”

Agence France-Presse reported:

Lawmakers in the former Soviet country voted narrowly to overturn legislation passed in June that would have made it illegal to distribute information about homosexuality to children.

They voted to remove a clause that barred the promotion of “relationships [other] than those linked to marriage and the family”, which had been strongly supported by the Orthodox Church in the majority Christian country.

Radio Liberty reported:

Palace of the Republic in Chisinau, Moldova (Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons)
Palace of the Republic in Chisinau, Moldova (Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons)

The decision on October 11 was made by lawmakers while dozens of Orthodox priests and Communist lawmakers were blocking the entrance to the Palace of the Republic in Chisinau, trying to thwart the parliament session.

The lawmakers entered the building through the back door.

The Orthodox faithful were protesting the parliament’s discussion of a European Union-backed law on nondiscrimination that would guarantee the rights of Moldova’s gay citizens.

They insisted that Moldova’s existing legislation, which envisages penalties for the propagation of extramarital or homosexual relations, should remain unchanged.

Chisinau hopes to be offered an EU Association Agreement at the Eastern Partnership summit in Vilnius next month.

Gay Star News reported:

Overturning the ban is the first step in passing the anti-discrimination law as otherwise the Government could be found to be in breach of its own law. …

The Russian aligned Orthodox Church in Moldova even threatened lawmakers with banning them from taking communion if they passed the anti-discrimination law.

Earlier this month Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili accused Russian President Vladimir Putin of exporting homophobia to other former Soviet Union countries in an attempt to retain control over them.

Moldova is still plagued with widespread discrimination against sexual minorities, as a feature article in Global Post points out.

Written by Colin Stewart

Colin Stewart is a 45-year journalism veteran living in Southern California. He is the president of the St. Paul’s Foundation for International Reconciliation, which supports LGBTQ+ rights advocacy journalism, Erasing 76 Crimes. Contact him at info@76crimes.com.

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