Immigration Minister: Canada will ‘seriously’ consider refugee claims by Russian homosexuals
SURREY, British Columbia, August 13, 2013 (LifeSiteNews.com) - Canada's newly appointed immigration minister said that Russia is wrong in restricting homosexual propaganda aimed at youth and indicated that refugee claims by Russian homosexuals will be given serious consideration by the Conservative government.
Speaking at a Canadian citizenship ceremony in Surrey, B.C. on August 12, Citizenship and Immigration Minister Chris Alexander said the Conservative government of Stephen Harper has made its position on the Russian laws against homosexual proselytizing known and that Russian refugee claims “related to this particular issue will of course be looked at very seriously by our very generous system.”
“This is a rights issue and Canadian values… require us to speak up when those rights are violated in gross ways,” Alexander said according to a Global News report. “We are going to speak out about Russia’s inappropriate actions in this area until the situation improves.”
Before being elected as the Conservative MP for Ajax-Pickering in 2011, Chris Alexander was a member of the Canadian Foreign Services, his first posting being a six-year assignment at the Canadian Embassy in Russia.
Campaign Life Coalition gives Alexander a "caution" status for his voting record on life and family issues.
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Alexander voted against Stephen Woodworth's Motion 312 to study whether a child in the womb is a human being based on the preponderance of evidence from modern medical science.
He voted for Bill C279, the "transgender & transsexual" empowerment bill which added the radical concepts of "gender identity" and "gender expression" as protected rights in the Human Rights Act and Criminal Code.
He did, however, vote for Bill C304, which repealed the controversial censorship provision (Sect 13) of the Canadian Human Rights Act. Section 13 had given Human Rights Tribunals an abusive amount of power which was used to repress freedom of speech and freedom of conscience, particularly among those who held traditional Christian beliefs on homosexuality.
Prime Minister Harper recently waded into the mainstream media frenzy surrounding the Russian law banning homosexual propaganda, suggesting that Russian authorities are cracking down on people because they are homosexual.
“I think it’s important to recognize there are some controversies in this matter, but the reality is that our position is that we don’t imprison or kill people for acts committed freely between adults,” Harper said according to a Globe and Mail report.
“We don’t imprison people for their expressing political positions. I think our position in this regard represents the position of Canadians and they expect that we speak in favour of these rights,” he added during a speech in Miramichi, New Brunswick.
However, homosexuality itself is not prosecuted in Russia. Instead the Russian government recently voted, 436 to 0, to ban homosexual propagandizing by foreign or domestic activists.
The new law prohibits the promotion of homosexuality, and other deviant sexual behaviors, among minors by making it illegal to give children "information aimed at forming non-traditional sexual behavior among children, suggesting this behavior is attractive, and making a false statement about the socially equal nature of traditional and non-traditional relationships.”
Individuals using the Internet to spread homosexualist propaganda can be fined up to 5,000 roubles (US $155); officials can be fined up to 10 times that amount. The maximum fine is one million roubles (US $30,800).
Foreigners found in violation of the law can be arrested and held for up to 15 days before being deported.
The legislation will effectively outlaw “gay pride” festivals and stop attempts by foreign homosexualist activist groups to normalize their lifestyles or campaign for same-sex legal recognition in Russia.
Prime Minister Vladimir Putin defended the bill, saying that while it is “necessary to defend the rights of sexual minorities,” Russian public opinion must also be respected. A state-sponsored poll found that 88 percent of Russians agree with the homosexual propaganda ban.
Under the law, Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird, who is on record for promoting homosexual rights as a key component of Canada's foreign policy, could theoretically run afoul of Russian law.
Last year Baird told the Montreal Council on Foreign Relations that he is “aggressively” pursuing what he called Canada’s “principled, values-based” foreign policy.
As part of that effort, Baird said that he is working with western countries to promote homosexual rights in countries around the world where “violent mobs … seek to criminalize homosexuality,” and to make Canada "a welcoming haven for homosexual refugees."
REAL Women of Canada recently blasted Baird for trying to impose what it describes as “his own perspective on homosexuality” in foreign countries such as Uganda, Kenya, and Russia that have passed laws aimed at preserving the traditional family structure.
“Just who does John Baird think he is, using taxpayers’ money to promote his own personal agenda and endeavouring to set standards for the laws of foreign countries?” asked Gwen Landolt, National Vice-President of REAL Women of Canada, in an August 8th press release.
REAL women slammed Baird for “working extensively behind the scenes to prevent Russia from passing legislation designated to protect Russian minors from homosexual propaganda.”
Immigration Minister Chris Alexander
100 Westney Road South, Unit E101, Ajax, Ontario L1S 7H3
Email: [email protected]
Prime Minister Stephen Harper
House of Commons, Ottawa, Ontario, K1A 0A6
E-mail: [email protected]