23 May 2016
Over at the UN in the USA 51 Muslim states have blocked 11 LGBTI organisations from attending a high-level AIDS conference at the UN.
The blacklisted organisations, with a focus on LGBTI rights, are from Egypt, Estonia, Guyana, Jamaica, Kenya, Peru, Thailand, Ukraine, Africa and the United States. They will be unable to attend the conference, which is to take place next month.
A letter objecting the participation of the groups, sent from Egypt, was addressed to the president of the 193-member general assembly, Mogens Lykketoft, on behalf of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation.
Although no reason was given in the letter, US Ambassador to the UN, Samantha Power, wrote to Lykketoft saying she believes this is because the organisation are involved in LGBTI advocacy and that the exclusion of these groups will be hugely detrimental.
“Given that transgender people are 49 times more likely to be living with HIV than the general population, their exclusion from the high-level meeting will only impede global progress in combating the HIV/Aids pandemic,” she wrote.
The European Union, Britain, Canada and Australia have also expressed their concern regarding the exclusion of these 11 groups.
The AIDS conference will be held at the UN headquarters in New York in June.