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Paraguay will ‘burn books’ which don’t promote ‘traditional gender ideology’

October 20, 2017

Schools in Paraguay will no longer be able to teach an LGBT inclusive curriculum, after changes announced by the Government.

The Ministry of Education has banned all public schools from using or spreading materials on “gender ideology”, saying the idea that “gender is a social construct” was problematic.

“We naturally respect different options,” Education Minister Enrique Riera told reporters at a press conference, according to ABC Colour. “But we’re not going to instill them in our public schools.”

He went on to stress the Government recognises “traditional values” and “traditional families” – namely those consisting of a “father, mother and children”.

The politician even went as far to say that he would burn any books that spread “gender ideology”.

LGBT organisations have been quick to condemn the move, saying it was a phrase “invented” by conservative pressure groups.

“[This idea has been] invented by conservative groups to keep justifying violence and discrimination against women and LGBTI people,” they added.

Amnesty International has also slammed the move, calling it an “extremely dangerous backwards step.”

Americas Director Erika Guevara Rosas added: “Under cover of the malicious expression ‘gender ideology’, what is really happening here is the suppression of education about equality and discrimination, which is an international obligation of the Paraguayan state – not an ideology.

“Excluding education on equality from the curriculum is tantamount to state promotion of violence and discrimination, with extremely grave consequence.”

“This decision represents an extremely dangerous backward step for human rights in the country.

Paraguay’s President Horacio Cartes (Image: Inti Ocon/AFP/Getty Images)

While it isn’t illegal to be gay in Paraguay, same-sex couples are unable to get married and there is no protection in law for LGBT people.

In 2013 the country’s newly elected President, who is still in post, was forced to apologise after saying he would shoot himself if his son was gay.

Businessman Horacio Cartes had previously said he would “shoot himself in the testicles” if his son married another man.

He later told reporters: “I have no shame in apologising to those who felt offended for an expression of mine with respect to same-sex marriage.”

He has also previously compared gay people to monkeys.

More: Americas

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