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Taoiseach Leo Varadkar expressed deep concern at the rise of anti-LGBTQ+ violence and hatred……

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar, in a United Nations speech, expressed grave concern over the rise in anti-LGBTQ+ violence and discrimination, both in Ireland and globally. He decried the increasing efforts by some nations to undermine international commitments to LGBTQ+ rights.

Varadkar highlighted the backlash against transgender individuals and condemned the reintroduction of discriminatory laws, including the death penalty, in certain countries. He emphasised Ireland’s commitment to working with the Core Group to address this pushback.

During the speech, Varadkar noted the 75th anniversary of the Universal Declaration on Human Rights, emphasising that “LGBTI rights are human rights” and must be universally upheld.

He also reflected on Ireland’s progress, recounting that just 30 years ago, same-sex relations were criminalized. Today, Ireland is more inclusive and accepting, having achieved marriage equality through a historic referendum in 2015 and passing the Gender Recognition Act. Varadkar stated that Ireland’s journey can serve as an example for other nations, with the intention to share rather than dictate.

In his concluding remarks, Varadkar acknowledged Ireland’s progress in LGBTQ+ rights but recognised ongoing challenges. He highlighted the government’s commitment to addressing these issues, including plans to expunge historic convictions related to consensual same-sex activity and implement a ban on conversion therapy in Ireland.

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