Plenary summary: violence LGBTI people Iraq, Syria; EU Fundamental Rights mechanism

During its first February Plenary session, the European Parliament adopted a report calling for an LGBT non-discrimination clause in a future agreement with ACP states; it called on the EU and Member States to step up efforts to counter anti-LGBTI violence in Iraq and Syria, and debated fundamental rights and the rule of law in the EU.

LGBT non-discrimination clause in future EU-ACP Agreement

Flags outside the European Parliament building Louise Weiss in StrasbourgOn Wednesday, the European Parliament  adopted a report in which it condemns laws criminalising LGBTI people, and calls for inclusion of non-discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity in a future agreement with African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) states.

Read our earlier press release here.

EU to step up efforts on violence against LGBTI people Iraq, Syria

Yesterday, the parliament adopted a resolution on the humanitarian crisis in Syria and Iraq, particularly in the IS context. The resolution also addresses the violence against LGBTI people.

The parliament emphasises that the situation of LGBT people is particularly vulnerable, as they mostly lack, family and community support and government protection, and recognises that their safety remains at risk in refugee communities or in certain host societies.

Accordingly, the parliament calls on the EU an Member States to step up efforts to protect LGBTI people in line with the EU Guidelines to promote and protect the enjoyment of all human rights by lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex persons.

MEPs debate mechanism to protect fundamental rights in EU

On Wednesday, parliamentarians debated with the Commission about the need for a mechanism to enforce and protect fundamental rights and the rule of law within the EU.

Whereas in its foreign policy, the EU has a strong focus on human rights, in many cases it lacks the instruments to act if internally Member States violate its core values.

Fundamental Rights Commissioner Frans Timmermans emphasised many tools already exist, including last year’s EU Rule of Law Framework, and announced an annual colloquium on fundamental rights.

Ulrike Lunacek MEP, Co-President of the LGBTI Intergroup, focused on the rights of LGBTI people in her intervention.