ZIMBABWE’S Ambassador to the United Nations, Chitsaka Chipaziwa, on Tuesday launched a tirade against the United States over gay rights as the world body debated a controversial reference to sexual orientation.
The US succeeded in getting the United Nations to restore the reference to killings due to sexual orientation that had been deleted from a resolution condemning unjustified executions.
However, prior to the vote, ambassador Chipaziwa slammed the U.S. amendment, saying there was no need to refer explicitly to sexual orientation.
"We will not have it foisted on us," he said. "We cannot accept this, especially if it entails accepting such practices as bestiality, pedophilia and those other practices many societies would find abhorrent in their value systems.
"In our view, what adult people do in their private capacity by mutual consent does not need agreement or rejection by governments, save where such practices are legally proscribed," Chitsaka said.
Western delegations were disappointed last month when the U.N. General Assembly's human rights committee approved an Arab and African proposal to cut the reference to slayings due to sexual orientation from a resolution on extrajudicial, summary and arbitrary executions.
The 192-nation General Assembly approved a U.S. amendment to the resolution that restored the reference to sexual orientation with 93 votes in favor, 55 against and 27 abstentions. The amended resolution was then adopted with 122 yes votes, one against and 62 abstentions.
The only country that voted against the resolution was Saudi Arabia.
The General Assembly passes resolutions condemning extrajudicial, summary and arbitrary executions and other killings every two years. The 2008 declaration had included an explicit reference to killings committed because of the victims' sexual preferences.
In addition to slayings over sexual orientation, the resolution specifies many other types of violence -- killings for racial, national, ethnic, religious or linguistic reasons and killings of refugees, indigenous people and other groups.