Sexual orientation and gender identity [fr]
Lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) people are still severely discriminated against in many parts of the world.
Whilst international texts affirm the equality of all persons without distinction as to race, colour, sex, language, religion or opinion, LGBTI people continue to be victims of harassment, acts of torture, arbitrary arrests, and even murders, in complete impunity.
Currently, homosexuality is an offence in over 70 States and punishable by death in ten of these. This situation is unacceptable. All of these individuals must benefit from the same protection of their rights, without discrimination.
France is actively committed to the defence and promotion of LGBTI rights. The universal decriminalisation of homosexuality is a priority for France.
France is fully mobilized within the United Nations on fighting the stigmatization and serious breaches of human rights to which LGBTI persons are subject around the world.
To this end, it has taken numerous initiatives:
• In December 2008, France and the Netherlands presented the text of the Declaration on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity to the United Nations General Assembly. In 2020, nearly 70 States had signed the declaration.
• As a member of the LGBTI core-group at the United Nations (which has 29 states) France regularly joins joint statements and high-level events on violence and discrimination against LGBTI people.
• France worked on drafting the Human Rights Council Resolution on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity in June 2011. It also supported the historic panel on sexual orientation and gender identity during the 19th Session of the Human Rights Council in March 2012.
• France was actively involved in the diplomatic work which led to the adoption of a resolution condemning discrimination and violence based on sexual orientation and gender identity by the Human Rights Council (HRC) in September 2014.
• In June 2016, the HRC adopted a resolution on violence and discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity, presented by Argentina, Brazil, Uruguay, Chile, Mexico and Colombia. This resolution led to the creation, for the first time in this field, of the position of Independent Expert on protection against violence and discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity.
• Following the Orlando attacks, on12 June 2016, the Security Council, chaired by France, adopted a declaration condemning the attack and its homophobic character. It is the first Security Council declaration which mentions victims’ sexual orientation. On 16 June 2016, at the initiative of Samantha Power, then Permanent Representative of the United States to the UN, a high-level meeting was held at Stonewall Inn, in New York, a very symbolic location for the fight for LGBTI rights. France, as well as 15 other countries and the EU, participated in this meeting.
The success of these initiatives is proof of the gradual progress of this issue within the United Nations and among States, despite the persistence of certain conservative views, as well as continuous commitment of France and its partners on this issue.
France’s commitment at the international level goes beyond the framework of the United Nations. It is committed alongside its European partners, but also alongside NGOs and international coalitions in the promotion and defence of LGBTI rights. It also supports associations defending LGBTI rights in French-speaking countries.