Posts Tagged ‘Haralambos Athanasiou’

Greek justice minister shows clear signs of homophobia

December 3, 2014

The Guardian of 2 December 2014 reports that Greece’s justice minister, Haralambos Athanasiou, has been accused of homophobia after unequivocally denouncing gay marriage and opposing even same-sex unions, saying they pose dangers to society, especially a society that “respected traditions”.  Complying with EU demands to legalise partnerships for homosexual couples was also problematic, he said, because it was not without potentially adverse consequences for society.

[Athens was fined by the European court of human rights last year for failing to extend protective rights, including domestic partnerships, to gays and lesbians, a move the tribunal described as discriminating to same-sex couples. Following the judgment, the prime minister Antonis Samaras’s conservative-dominated coalition signalled that it would redress the wrong but got cold feet when rightwingers and clerics reacted in fury. Greece and Lithuania stand alone in refusing to grant such rights.]

[This year the Greek Orthodox bishop of Thessaloniki, Anthimos, called homosexuality “a perversion of human existence”.]

Andrea Gilbert, a LGBT activist, said: “Greece wants to present itself to Europe and the rest of the world as a modern democratic country that respects the rights of all its citizens. These are really very shocking statements when the man making them is the minister of justice, the person who is meant to protect citizens, not a crackpot member of Golden Dawn.” [In April, Ilias Panagiotaros of the neo-fascist Golden Dawn party, denounced same-sex relationships as a “sickness”]

Greek justice minister denounces gay marriage | World news | The Guardian.