New EU presidency urged to protect gay rights

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The International Lesbian and Gay Association (ILGA) has published a list of demands for the new presidency of the European Union.

Finland will be in charge of the political body for the next six months after Austria’s rule since January came to an end, and ILGA has immediately produced a memorandum on gay issues for the country to follow.

The document addresses issues of cost cutting, enlargement, regulation, transparency, finance, policy, and external relations.

It calls on the EU to protect “fundamental rights and equality” and to ensure new and potential member states such as Bulgaria, Turkey, Romania, Croatia and Macedonia protect the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community as well as Third World and Middle Eastern countries.

The document also pushes for funding for LGBT organisations and projects and a strong clampdown on homophobia and racism on the continent.

Last month, the European Union passed a resolution to combat homophobia and racism which would see sentences handed down for homophobic, anti Semitic, and Islamophobic offences.