By Hilary White

STRASBOURG, France, July 9, 2008 ( – Homosexual activists have called “very important” a resolution adopted by the Council of Europe this week to step up pressure on EU member states to implement their political programme in countries still retaining traditional definitions of marriage and family, as well as “gender”.

At their meeting on July 2, the Committee of Ministers of the Council ordered the “elaboration of a recommendation” aimed at “at enhancedâEUR¦ action against discrimination” and to bring member states into line with the homosexual movement’s political advances.

This will include “work” on the topic of “of marital and non-marital partnerships and cohabitation” to assist those member states who have not yet implemented legal recognition of homosexual and other types of unions. Member states will be instructed to “avoid and remedy any discrimination on grounds of sexual orientation or gender identity”. Proposals are planned to “strengthen the equal rights” of homosexuals and “transgendered persons” and to combat “discriminatory attitudes” towards them.

The homosexualist movement reacted with high praise saying that the Council of Europe “strongly reaffirmed” their position. The International Gay and Lesbian Association (ILGA), the European Union’s premier homosexualist lobby group, called it an “historic development”.

ILGA-Europe Executive Director, Patricia Prendiville commented, “For the first time since the foundation of the Council of Europe nearly 60 years ago, its executive committee, the Foreign Ministers of the 47 member states, is to issue a formal declaration in support of LGBT rights, and to engage the whole organisation in combating discrimination against LGBT people.”

With this decision, it is expected that pressure will increase on those countries that maintain legal definitions of marriage and family that preclude recognition of homosexual partnerings.

Although Poland’s constitution, for example, guarantees equality under the law for all citizens and bars unlawful discrimination “for any reason”, the country is under almost constant pressure to implement special provisions recognising homosexual partnerships.

Meanwhile, surveys continue to show overwhelming public opposition in Poland to the attempted normalisation of the homosexual lifestyle. A 2005 survey found 89 per cent of the population stating that they consider homosexuality an “unnatural” activity. In 2006 the European Commission ran a poll that showed Polish public opinion was generally opposed to same-sex “marriage” and to adoption by homosexuals.

Greece, Latvia, Belarus, Serbia, Malta, Slovakia and Ukraine are likely to be particularly singled out by activists and EU officials for having retained the legal meaning of marriage and family as being between a man and a woman and refusing attempts to install “gay marriage” or civil partnerships.

In some of those countries, homosexuality is still recognised as a mental disorder that bars a person from military service. The adoption of children is reserved for couples in natural marriages. In many of the countries homosexual activists have noted that the continued influence of religious bodies, in most cases either Orthodox or Catholic, is a significant obstacle for their progress.

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