“Politicians specifically sought to avoid debating the bill in public.”
By Cathy Kristofferson, July 18, 2013
An article introduced in the Parliament of Moldova on May 23rd titled “Public activities with negative impact on minors” has now been secretly passed and adopted. Today, the European Parliament’s Intergroup on LGBT Rights is reporting that “A new ‘anti-propaganda’ law, similar to those recently enacted in Russia, was discussed and adopted away from public scrutiny and entered into force on 12 July. Politicians specifically sought to avoid debating the bill in public.”
The Moldovan law is almost identical to the ban on “propaganda of nontraditional sexual relations” recently adopted in Putin’s Russia.
The Moldovan Contravention Code now forbids the:
“distribution of public information […] aimed at the propagation of prostitution, paedophilia, pornography or of any other relations than those related to marriage or family”.
In June, Moldova had specifically been called out by the Council of Europe, of which they are a member. They had been warned to avoid such legislation. The Council of Europe requested an opinion on “the issue of the prohibition of so-called ‘propaganda of homosexuality’ in the light of recent legislation in some Council of Europe Member States, including the Republic of Moldova, the Russian Federation and Ukraine”.
“82. On the whole, it seems that the aim of these measures is not so much to advance and promote traditional values and attitudes towards family and sexuality but rather to curtail non-traditional ones by punishing their expression and promotion. As such, the measures in question appear to be incompatible with “the underlying values of the ECHR…
83. In the light of the above, the Venice Commission considers that the statutory provisions prohibiting “propaganda of homosexuality”, are incompatible with ECHR and international human rights standards. The Venice Commission therefore recommends that these provisions be repealed.”
Last month, the European Commission for Democracy through Law warned that ‘anti-propaganda laws’ breach the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR). Moldova is legal bound to the ECHR. The government of Moldova has ignored that warning as had Russia before it. We will have to watch what the Council of Europe will do in response.
Perhaps Moldova has instead decided to take counsel from Scott Lively. As we reported back in May the anti-gay hater had traveled to Moldova in 2011 to campaign against an anti-discrimination law based on sexual orientation that had been introduced in their Parliament. He left behind his usual guideline and video instructions for defeating the ‘gay agenda’. He had warned of the onslaught of horrendous activities sure to come to Moldova should they allow their LGBT community any signs of equality saying:
“I guarantee you, if you adopt, if your country votes for the anti-discrimination law you will have a Gay Pride parade this summer, and it will be protected by the police, and the citizens will be able to do nothing about it. And that will be just the beginning.”
So, is this new law violating freedom of expression Moldova’s answer to their LGBT Community’s first ever Pride?