Diplomats for Equality Celebrates May 17th, the International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia and Transphobia
We – The Austrian Federal Ministry for European and International Affairs, and the diplomatic missions of Andorra, Argentina, Australia, Belgium, Canada, Chile, Costa Rica, Croatia, Cyprus, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Iceland, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Mexico, Montenegro, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Portugal, San Marino, Slovakia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Ukraine, the United Kingdom, the United States, Uruguay, as well as the European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA), the Delegation of the European Union to the International Organisations, UN-GLOBE, and the Vienna School of International Studies – all welcome May 17th as the International Day against Homophobia, Biphobia and Transphobia (IDAHOBIT), as a celebration of diversity and inclusion around the world.
We fully support the IDAHOBIT 2023 theme “Together Always: United in Diversity”. We are united in our strong recognition of the value of diversity, and our shared commitment to empowering those who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex, and queer. We celebrate and support inclusive societies that respect the dignity and human rights of LGBTIQ+ persons and bring people together through open dialogue where all voices are heard.
We oppose intolerance and the spread of extreme viewpoints that divide society and exacerbate the vulnerable situation of LGBTIQ+ persons. Intolerance widens existing gaps of equality, reinforces harmful biases and social stigma, and increases the risk of violence. During a time of multiple global conflicts, we are also united in our concern for the impact that armed conflict has on persons in vulnerable situations, including LGBTIQ+ persons. It is our belief that nobody should face violence and discrimination because of who they are or whom they love.
We are united in our support for efforts aimed at decriminalising same sex relations and persons on the basis of sex characteristics, sexual orientation, or gender identity. In many countries, LGBTIQ+ persons continue to suffer from violence, discrimination and bullying, often with deadly consequences. In 64 jurisdictions, consensual same sex relations are still criminalised. As the world celebrates the 75th Anniversary of Universal Declaration of Human Rights in 2023, we continue our support for past UN General Assembly statements that reaffirm that human rights apply equally to every human being regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity.
Similarly, we remain fully committed to promoting and protecting the rights of LGBTIQ+ persons, who must be able to enjoy the same dignity, respect, and human rights as all other persons. We will continue to work through our Embassies, through International Organisations, and our partners everywhere to promote tolerance, inclusivity, and non-discrimination against LGBTIQ+ persons.
Once again, we wish to pay homage to the courageous advocacy efforts carried out by human rights defenders, activists, journalists, media workers, indigenous advocates, and civil society organisations to raise awareness about the issues affecting LGBTIQ+ persons and the human rights violations they may face.
At this time when progress achieved by LGBTIQ+ communities has come under increasing pressure, the force of strong alliances, genuine solidarity, and firm unity are more critical than ever before. We hope that you will join our efforts, on the occasion of IDAHOBIT 2023 and throughout the year, to make Vienna’s diplomatic and international community—and our world—more inclusive for all.