Gays threaten the continuation of the human race, Libya’s UN delegate has reportedly told the organisation’s Human Rights Council.

The UN Watch monitoring group reported comments made yesterday at Libya’s first appearance after it overthrew the Gadaffi regime.

Libya was reinstated to the Human Rights Council in November of last year with its delegate pledging no violations would take place on the country’s soil.

Libyan deputy UN envoy Ibrahim Dabbashi said the new Libya “deserved to contribute with other members to the promotion of values of human rights”.

Protesting a discussion on discrimination and violence based on sexual orientation, Libya’s representative reportedly told the gathering of ambassadors that gay issues “affect religion and the continuation and reproduction of the human race.”

He also said Libya would have opposed the council’s historic June resolution on the human rights of gay and trans people, which passed 23-19.

Laura Dupuy Lasserre, the UN Human Rights Council president said in reaction to the Libyan statement that the council was “here to defend human rights and prevent discrimination”.

Hillel Neuer, Executive Director of UN Watch said: “We were happy to see the Gaddafi regime finally suspended last year.

“Yet today’s shocking homophobic outburst by the new Libyan government, together with the routine abuse of prisoners, underscores the serious questions we have about whether the new regime is genuinely committed to improving on the dark record of its predecessor, or to pandering to some of the hardline Islamists amidst its ranks.”

He added: “The new rulers’ pledges are being broken.

“Gays are now paying the price, with their right to be free from violent attacks now being undermined at the UN by a country that democratic countries fought to liberate, and by a goverment that our leaders helped install. It’s all very disconcerting.”