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Top EU official says Europe should stop lecturing Africa on gay rights

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  1. We need to focus on fundamental values? So, being able to live your life without fear of being chucked in prison or even, potentially, sentenced to death isn’t a fundamental value?

  2. Is Mr. Nicholas Westcott a Catholic? Or is he some other form of deluded religionist? Or is he simply a non-religious homophobe?

    1. That was the first question that occurred to me, too. This man has virtually no online history so I can’t find out his background

  3. So LGBT (ie human) rights are now just a cultural issue?

    1. Robert in S. Kensington 3 Oct 2013, 1:01pm

      Only if you happen to be heterosexual it seems and unaffected by discrimination of any kind. If hetero adultery, divorce and promiscuity were illegal, it would be a human right.

      1. Human right to adultery, huh?? In which convention did you read that?

  4. Various UN and other reports have highlighted the extent of slavery that still exists in Africa. Should we also regard this as ‘cultural issue’ that should be tiptoed around in case we offend the delicate sensitivities of some tyrant like Jammeh in Gambia?

    This is ‘liberal relativity’ disappearing up its own fundament (and I’m a card carrying liberal…)

  5. James Savik 3 Oct 2013, 11:34am

    I wouldn’t give a damn about Africa if it wasn’t for all the illegals/refugees that come from countries where corrupt and incompetent dictators have made those resource rich countries practically unlivable.

    1. Brett Gibson 3 Oct 2013, 12:59pm

      If it weren’t*

      Guess it’s true what they say about racists’ IQ levels…..

      1. Master Adrian 3 Oct 2013, 1:10pm

        If that’s all in reply… I start wondering about the non-racists’s IQ-levels….

        1. Master Adrian, are you admitting that you’re a racist?

  6. We’ll stop lecturing them when they stop asking for aid. I’m SICK of my hard-earn tax being used to support regimes which hate me.

    1. Right, so you care about your tax money more than the poor Africans who are actually suffering under these appallingly homophobic laws? My heart bleeds for you.

  7. He’s obviously got a hidden agenda here- possibly a connection with the Catholic Church?

    1. Robert in S. Kensington 3 Oct 2013, 1:07pm

      I couldn’t find anything about him other than his education at Cambridge and married with two children. Anyone having anything to do with government should have their background fully available in my view.

  8. They are all running scared.. They know there views are wrong but like a Kid caught with a match by a burning haystack they are still in denial of the facts.. Let keep up the pressure and ALL the bigot inhuman laws can and will be ended. All it will take is time. Humans rights for all not just Heterosexuals

  9. bobbleobble 3 Oct 2013, 11:42am

    Someone’s worried that the money they’re making from exploiting Africa is drying up because the EU is taking a stand on such trifles as human rights. It always comes down to cash in the end, gay people can be thrown under the bus so long as the moolah still rolls in. You’re a sick little puppy Mr Westcott and you should, though I doubt you will, be ashamed.

    1. it seems that’s that matters MONEY
      I stopped donating to charities that help “homophobic” countries, maybe if the aid stops then they will listen.

  10. Jock S. Trap 3 Oct 2013, 11:43am

    Yeah.. stop trying to improve human rights, decency and respect. We’ll just sit aside while they rape innocent women for correction, murder innocent people just because of who they are…

    What an idiot.

    If we think we’re better people, then show it, promote it… give others the chance for a better life.

    1. Europe had exactly the same thing happened as far as rape and genoicde is concerned less than 20 years ago in the mid-90s, remember Bosnia and 50 years before that the rampage of the Nazis and Soviets across Europe? It’s always been a worldwide problem.

  11. Derek Williams 3 Oct 2013, 11:55am

    He doesn’t think we’re humans, so obviously we don’t deserve to be treated as human beings. At least we know where we stand with HIM.

  12. Anything for money eh? Including turning a blind eye to human rights abuses.

  13. Another one who doesn’t care.

  14. Look, it will make my lucrative job easier if you stop worrying about human rights in these places. Perhaps that’s what it amounts to?

  15. So Mr Westcott if the EU doesn’t, then who exactly is going to speak up for GLBTI Africans, who could be executed or imprisoned or jsut plain old harassed, all because of their sexual orientation.

    Catherine Aston should do some serious supervision of this guy – he is a disgrace to her department and the UK.

    1. Master Adrian 3 Oct 2013, 1:07pm

      I wonder why the African Union, equal to the European Union, doesn’t step up and condemn the anti-gay attitude of a lot of African Countries? The EU should perhaps push harder with the AU, to achieve improvement of the position of equality in Africa!

  16. That There Other David 3 Oct 2013, 12:26pm

    Yeah, throw us under the bus and concentrate on achieving your own aims, why don’t you?

    After all, we’re used to it. Governments have done it to us for centuries. Not like we’ll care that much anyway, right?

    I’ve never met this man, yet I think I actually both despise and pity him for the spineless swine he is.

  17. Master Adrian 3 Oct 2013, 1:05pm

    In a way I do agree with this EU-Top Official…. lets clean house before complaining about the trash in someone else’s house…..
    Europe itself is still not up2date were it concerns equality and equal rights at all!
    Take the countries in what is known as Eastern Europe, as well as the Balkan countries…… Homosexual people are still discriminated, harassed and worse…. by citizens as well as by governments, police etc.!
    As long as Europe’s own house is not free of in-equality and homophobic attitudes, on all levels, representatives of the European Government should not accuse others of the same……

    On the other hand, keeping silent on matters of in-equality would allow African religious terrorists (originals or imported ones) to go on with killing homosexual people simply for being homosexual, and of course that must be fought, and stopped.

    Probably the European Government must fight homophobism and in-equality on both fronts, internally and externally, focusing on internally!

    1. Multitasking Adrian, its not like they do not have enough staff in the EU to do both !!

  18. Ironic!

    He was perfectly willing to make his views known in 2009 re:

    “Dr Nicholas Westcott, has stressed the need for the Presbyterian Church of Ghana (PCG) to mount a campaign on the issues of climate and the abolition of death penalty from the status book of the country.”

    So climate change and the death penalty were worth mentioning – the rights of two people who love each other – obviously not!

    …and I’m with previous comments – I’ll bet religion has it’s grubby hands in some part of this.

  19. Andrew Hawkins-Kennedy 3 Oct 2013, 1:15pm

    So the aid to Africa that is paid for by EU taxpayers doesn’t come from gay pockets. If they want our money then values are incredibly important. I don’t want any of my money going to a gay hating country no matter how big their problems are!

    1. No of course you don’t, you’re like a Mail reader “MY taxes”etc. Be grateful that you earn taxes, you’re privileged in life compared to people in the third world.
      By all means condemn their homophobia but to dismiss the dire poverty of these countries is utterly heartless and ignorant.

  20. Frankly I am ashamed to be from the same country as this guy, so he went to Cambridge, just goes to show IQ does nor equate with understanding and knowledge.
    Nick Westcott, said; we need to concentrate on fundamental vales in Africa.
    Yes Mr Westcott their is nothing more fundamental than to not be arrested or persecuted for WHO you are, or to be harassed by your government, murdered in your home and be vilified, for your fundamental identity. Tradition is not a valid excuse for violating peoples BASIC HUMAN RIGHTS, neither is Religion. Please take your self over to the UNHRC website, you may learn something.
    Perhaps you need a fundamental rethink of your attitude to this matter, and if you are incapable, need to be re-assigned to something within your competency level. Where is Catherine Ashton? This is a disgrace.

  21. SACK HIM!

    1. Best comment so far john.

  22. It is precisely because of our lecturing that places such as Uganda, and I’m sure a few other places as well) have held back on the death penalty for homosexuality related offenses.
    Not that Nick Westcott would care, but the EU’s lecturing has saved lives, and the EU should continue to lecture places like Africa in the hopes of saving more lives.

    1. Black & Gay 5 Oct 2013, 7:51pm

      No its not, the LGBT community have no power in africa except for south africa other then that, we can lobby and protest and they continue to do what they want

  23. Colin (London) 3 Oct 2013, 2:19pm

    Just sack him immediately.

    Basic human rights first for everyone including gay people….Then the likes of religion mumbo jumbo in my opinion.

    And where they clash…HUMAN RIGHTS FIRST.

    Stop trying to bribe, cajole etc Africa. Thats been happening since I was a kid 40 something years ago (well i’m a gay boy..gaydar years) and very little has changed. New faces same bigotry, thieving etc and killings.

    Grow a pair, get a real army and a plan for Africa. You have tried the soft approach and it is not working.

    Shocking ..Sack him

  24. He’s correct on one point. We should stop lecturing these countries. Stop talking and simply remove all funding, apply total trading embargoes, and block travel into or through the uk for all government officials supporting these views.

    This shouldn’t be up for discussion or negotiation.

    Change or suffer the consequences.

  25. funny, here’s what he said on the subject 10/12/2010
    The British High Commissioner in Ghana, Dr Nicholas Westcott, stressed the importance of human rights across the globe and said a failure to respect such rights could impact not just on the politics but on a country’s economy, just as it impacted on its international reputation. He said Ghana had made great strides in ensuring the respect of human rights, not least through the tremendous work that CHRAJ has done since it was set up in 1993.
    Dr Westcott also said civil society organisations, churches and all faith groups had also played a vital role. “Our two countries have been able to work together in international bodies to reinforce the respect for human rights everywhere. Both at home and abroad, we must keep up this effort to meet new challenges as they emerge”, he added.
    Seems LGBT people aren’t deserving of human rights now. He must be nearing retirement – time to protect investments in Ghana perhaps, just saying.

    1. I’m sorry, but I missed where he said that gay people were deserving of human rights THEN. Can you point out the sentence where he stated that. The fact is, he doesn’t believe that gay rights are human rights and he was in no way referring to gay rights when he wrote that eloquent ode to human rights. We have the same issue in the United States with people who are considered “civil rights activists” and “human rights activists” yet they campaign just as strongly AGAINST gay rights as they do FOR the rights of the group that they support.

      1. sorry – I thought I was human – thanks for putting me right and thanks for the capitals. I’ll leave you to it since you seem to be so much better at deciding what he meant than I could ever be..

  26. Wow, when the rubber hits the road gay people find out where they really stand with leaders in the IOC, EU, Nobel Peace Prize nominating committees, etc.

    We still have a LOOOOONG way to go. Some people seemed/seem to think that once we won marriage equality the fight was over and we won, but in reality, internationally (and in some was even at home) we are still in the early stages of a fight for TRUE social, legal and cultural equality that will go on for decades.

    1. That There Other David 3 Oct 2013, 3:02pm

      “First they ignore you, then they ridicule you, then they fight you, and then you win.” – Mahatma Ghandi

      Looks like we’re very much in the third stage.

  27. Human rights aren’t fundamental to the EU?

  28. Poenaru Brindusa-Katalin 3 Oct 2013, 4:38pm

    Human Rights are fundamental value! LGBTQI rights are fundamental value! So what is this gentleman’s problem? We cannot wait until the cows come home. We have to push them gently but firmly. It is very easy to speak like that when you are born with certain rights while others are not. I don’t feel comfortable having those rights while they are denied on some homophobic, bigoted grounds. This gentleman should stop lecturing US on what we should do.

  29. I agree. Drop the lecturing and drop the financial support and the humanitarian support etc. done deal

  30. nixi otemba 3 Oct 2013, 6:56pm

    Nick Westcott
    Dr Westcott was appointed Managing Director for Africa in the European
    External Action Service (EEAS) on 1 February 2011. Prior to that, he was
    British High Commissioner to Ghana and Ambassador to Cote d’Ivoire, Burkina
    Faso, Togo and Niger from 2008 to 2011. He has had previous postings as
    Deputy High Commissioner in Dar es Salaam, as Minister-Counsellor at the
    Embassy in Washington, and at the UK’s Permanent Representation to the EU
    in Brussels.
    At the FCO in London, he has been involved in EU work and was responsible
    for organising the G8 Summit in Birmingham in 1998. He was Chief
    Information Officer at the FCO from 2002 to 2007. From the end of 1997 until 2001, he worked in DG
    Development and DG Environment in Brussels on a wide range of environmental issues, particularly
    climate change in developing countries. He joined the European Commission in 1993, when he was
    first responsible for the bilateral co

  31. He is completely right! we should stop lecturing them for now. While we try and educate the bigots that represent us!

  32. Staircase2 4 Oct 2013, 2:45am

    What a load of rubbish – American Evangelicals have free and easy access to whip up a storm of homophobia in Africa yet those Human Rights Activists in the EU are supposedly ‘only making it worse’…?

    There are ways to make the case, but it’s simply nonsense to imply that homophobia is a culturally sensitive issue (when it’s actually historically a Western – read British – invention…)

  33. Poenaru Brindusa-Katalin 4 Oct 2013, 6:05am

    I am not a scholar in LGBTQI rights.I am simply a straight ally and sometimes even the fact that we are suposed to make an “alliance” sounds absurd. Though whenever I speak up/mostly in writing/on LGBTQI rights I keep worrying if that’s really what they want me to say or if they even want me to speak up….right now. I don’t know; all I know is that we are all the same:decent human beings. So having certain rights as a member of a majority means/for me at least/ that I am responsible for the minority to be treated equally respectful. And when it comes about basic human rights I KNOW that they are not to be denied to anybody human. There is no excuse for that in the XXIst Century. If certain people are not comfortable with that, it means that THEY have a problem. SO I will keep on speaking out for human rights for everybody. There’s no PROPER time for that; the time is NOW.

  34. Keith Francis Farrell 4 Oct 2013, 9:54am

    We need to make sure that our tax money is not wasted in countries that hate us. I am for the LGBT people. let Africa starve. If they dont want their LGBT people to live why should the rest of them. Get things right. we dont give aid unless people have equality and safety. That means all people including gay people

    1. Obviously you haven’t thought this through because if Africa was left to stave that would include the LGBT Africans and haven’t they suffered enough? It’s funny how people who bring up their taxes are the same people who spout the most heartless and ill-conceived nonsense. I’d expect comments like yours on the Mail or the Express sites.

  35. Wim, Holland 4 Oct 2013, 2:37pm

    Where was mr Westcott, when american fundamental christian preachers teached africans to hate gays at first?

  36. James Campbell 13 Nov 2013, 1:21am

    I too am a straight member of this group, but my brother is gay. I speak out in support of him and other gay people. I am also a doctor who works with children who present the spectrum of lesbian, gay, srtaight, trans and intersex so I speak up for them too. For millennia, human society has persecuted anyone who was suspected of being different. In the 21st century it is time to call a halt (in whatever way we can) to bigotry, persecution and the utter nonsense spoken by the ignorant & fearful. I liaise with a charity in East Africa (founded by black africans) which rescues intersex babies from where they are abandoned – the village rubbish tip. We should make it quite clear to all who persecute those who are different – including Africa, that things must change.

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