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Boris Johnson and Carrie Symonds to spend Christmas on Caribbean island where it’s illegal to be gay

Vic Parsons December 24, 2019

Prime Minister Boris Johnson and Carrie Symonds enter Downing Street as the Conservatives celebrate a sweeping election victory on December 13, 2019 in London, England. (Peter Summers/Getty Images)

UK prime minister Boris Johnson will spend his Christmas holiday on a Caribbean island where being LGBT+ is illegal.

Johnson and his girlfriend, Carrie Symonds, are expected to spend Christmas Day in 10 Downing Street before flying to the island of Mustique, the Evening Standard reports.

Mustique, just south of St Vincent and the Grenadines in the Caribbean, is a small private island that’s also been the holiday destination of several members of the British royal family.

Boris Johnson and Symonds will be staying with the Von Bismark family, who are relatives of Otto Von Bismark, the first German Chancellor.

Known for its white-sand beaches, the exclusive island is a favourite of the rich and famous, with Rolling Stones singer Mick Jagger owning property there and Princess Margaret owning a piece of land that was gifted to her as a wedding present.

But LGBT+ people in St Vincent and the Grenadines experience challenges that the non-LGBT+ population doesn’t face, including up to 10 years in prison for gay sex.

Equal marriage is not recognised in the country, and there are no discrimination protections for LGBT+ people.

Johnson’s holiday comes less than two weeks since he secured an 80-seat majority for the Conservative party in a UK general election.

Other recent British prime ministers have tended to take more low-key holidays, with Theresa May famously enjoying walking holidays with husband Philip, and David Cameron taking family holidays in Cornwall.

The Conservative Party secured a decisive victory in the UK general election, winning a large majority on a platform light on LGBT+ pledges.

Johnson’s second term means a few things for LGBT+ rights.

In his party manifesto, queer rights were mentioned just three times.

Johnson’s government will continue to “help teachers tackle [homophobic] bullying”, continue tackling LGBT+ hate crimes and form an international “LGBT conference”.

Although, in a Q&A with PinkNews, Johnson stated that the Tories remain “committed to the LGBT+ Action Plan, including ending the practice of gay conversion therapy”.

 

 

More: Boris Johnson, carrie symonds, mustique, princess margaret

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