France’s First Lady meets with LGBT campaigners in South Africa

October 14, 2013
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France’s First Lady has met with LGBT campaigners in South Africa as part of a visit to the country.

Valerie Trierweiler, partner of French President Francois Hollande, was accompanying Mr Hollande on his two-day state visit to South Africa. She met with a lesbian couple on Monday, according to AFP.

She wanted “to talk about the daily lives and experience of gay or bisexual women in South Africa who are married or in a relationship,” said Anthony Manion, director of Gala (Gay and Lesbian Memory in Action).

The meeting was closed to the media and the couple was not identified.

Campaigners in South Africa are hoping Ms Trierweiler will raise the issue of homophobic violence with South Africa’s government as part of her trip.

Despite having a fully inclusive constitution, LGBT people in South Africa face widespread attacks and cases of sexual attacks against the country’s lesbian community are common.

In April, the government stated its opposition to homophobic violence, following an attack on a gay man in Khayelitsha, Cape Town, which left him missing part of one ear.

A 26-year-old lesbian was found murdered and also sexually mutilated in the city of Johannesburg earlier this summer. 

South Africa set up a task team to address homophobic violence in 2011, but progress has been slow.





Related topics: Africa, anti-gay violence, Europe, France, francois hollande, gay couple, gay rights campaigners, Homophobia, lesbian, lesbians, LGBT campaigners, lgbt community, President Hollande, same-sex couple, South Africa, South Africa

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