Canada: Women’s group accuses Foreign Affairs Minister of abusing his position by supporting gay rights

Illustrated rainbow pride flag on a white background.

A Canadian conservative women’s group has accused Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird of taking advantage of his position in order to defend gay rights, after he spoke out last week against recently introduced Russian anti-gay laws.

Mr Baird spoke out last week to condemn recently introduced anti-gay laws in Russia as “hateful”, and said the law, which prohibits the “promotion” of homosexuality could incite violence.

Vice president of REAL Women of Canada, Gwendolyn Landolt, released a statement saying that Mr Baird’s remarks were “highly offensive”, to conservative taxpayers.

“Just who does John Baird think he is?‘‘ she asked. She went on to accuse Mr Baird of using public money to  “promote his own personal agenda and endeavouring to set standards of the laws of foreign countries.”

She continued to say that Mr Baird’s assertion that gay rights are “a Canadian value”, was incorrect because “this applies only to himself and his fellow activists and the left-wing elitists.”

“Not conservative values and that of grass roots Canadians,” she said.

President Vladimir Putin signed the law in June banning the promotion of “non-traditional relationships” toward minors, a move that has been criticised as part of a broader crackdown on Russia’s gay community.

In particular, he noted comments by Russia’s sports minister that the law will definitely be enforced during the Winter Olympics in Sochi, 2014.

Mr Baird recently attacked what he deemed ”offensive” and “mean-spirited” statements on the website of a Christian group which received federal funding for work in Uganda.

John Baird, had previously spoken out against plans for an anti-gay law which includes the death penalty for “aggravated homosexuality” in Uganda, a bill which returned to parliament when it reconvened earlier this month.