A European Parliament resolution which claims that ‘homophobia’ is frequently disguised as concern for religious freedom passed on Thursday by 430 votes to 105 with 59 MEPs abstaining.
The motion, which called for a series of measures to tackle “discrimination” against homosexuals said that “homophobia” manifested itself “in different forms.... which are often hidden behind justifications based on public order, religious freedom and the right to conscientious objection”.
It also called on EU Member States who have not created cohabitation, registered partnership or marriage rights for same-sex partnerships to do so on the basis that “LGBT people's fundamental rights are more likely to be safeguarded if they have access to” such legal institutions.”
The European Court of Human Rights has said there is no right to same-sex marriage in the European Convention on Human Rights.
Nine of the 12 Irish MEPs voted in favour, with three, Fianna Fail's Brian Crowley, the Socialist Party's Paul Murphy and Phil Prendergast of Labour not present.
The motion also condemned laws in a number of Russian provinces against “the propaganda of homosexuality” and the fact that the national parliament, the Duma, was considering such a law.
It also condemned similar laws in Moldova and Latvia, as well as draft laws in Ukraine which would make it an offence to ‘spread homosexuality’, including by ‘holding meetings, parades, actions, demonstrations and mass events aiming at intentional distribution of any positive information about homosexuality’ and provide for fines and up to five years‘ imprisonment.
The motion also suggested that the term ‘propaganda’ in such laws was rarely defined.