The historic endorsement is contained in a declaration approved by the Geneva-based UN Human Rights Council on a vote of 23 to 19, stating that the UN is gravely concerned over “acts of violence and discrimination, in all regions of the world, committed against individuals because of their sexual orientation and gender identity.”
Activists hailed the historic, albeit cautious UN declaration, as an important shift on an issue that has roiled the globe for decades.
Human Rights Council Voting Record:
Countries that voted for this declaration: Argentina, Belgium, Brazil, Chile, Cuba, Ecuador, France, Guatemala, Hungary, Japan, Mauritius, Mexico, Norway, Poland, South Korea, Slovakia, Spain, Switzerland, Thailand, Ukraine, United Kingdom, United States, Uruguay
Countries that voted against this declaration: Angola, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Cameroon, Djibouti, Gabon, Ghana, Jordan, Malaysia, Maldives, Mauritania, Nigeria, Pakistan, Qatar, Republic of Moldova, Russian Federation, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Uganda
Countries that abstained: China, Burkina Faso, Zambia
Other: Kyrgyzstan didn’t vote, Libya was suspended from the human rights body earlier
What is unfortunately clear is that while it is great that this declaration that was passed,there is still a vast level of discrimination and hatred globally towards sexual and gender minorities, with the comments made by those nineteen nations that voted against the declaration being highly disturbing.
The proposal went too far for many of the council’s 47-member states, including Russia, Saudi Arabia, Nigeria and Pakistan. Representatives of those countries said gay rights had nothing to do with human rights.