Lithuania: Sexuality

Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs written question – answered on 21st July 2009.

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Photo of Tony Lloyd Tony Lloyd Chair, Parliamentary Labour Party

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what representations he has made to the Lithuanian Government on the effect of recent changes to Lithuanian law on the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community in that country.

Photo of Chris Bryant Chris Bryant Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Foreign and Commonwealth Office)

The Government are disappointed that on 14 July 2009 the Lithuanian Parliament overruled the veto of their outgoing President, Valdas Adamkus, and passed the controversial law on the Protection of Minors against the Detrimental Effect of Public Information.

The new law contains a clause which classifies "agitating in favour" of homosexual or bisexual relationships as potentially harmful to the development of minors. Our ambassador to Lithuania, together with EU partners, has expressed our concerns about this law, including in a meeting with President Adamkus on 22 June 2009. Lithuania's incoming President, Dalia Grybauskaite, is obliged to sign the Bill into law.

The Government welcome President Grybauskaite's statement that she disapproves of aspects of the law and will take all legal measures to seek its improvement. We will continue to work with EU partners to ensure that Lithuania satisfies its human rights obligations.

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