Ambassador leaving 'homophobic' Estonia
6 June 2006, AMSTERDAM — Dutch Ambassador Hans Glaubitz is leaving Estonia because his male partner, a black Cuban, has been the victim of homophobia and racism.
6 June 2006
AMSTERDAM — Dutch Ambassador Hans Glaubitz is leaving Estonia because his male partner, a black Cuban, has been the victim of homophobia and racism.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs in The Hague confirmed a report in newspaper 'NRC Handelsblad' about his decision.
The Ambassador's partner was subjected to verbal harassment and threats in the street and threats. These began after a local magazine wrote that the appointment of a gay Ambassador with a black partner had to be seen as a Dutch provocation.
The Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs had hoped that Estonia, like its neighbour Finland, would be able to accept a relationship between two men. According to a report by the US Embassy in the capital Tallinn there have been nine cases of threats made to non-white embassy staff, mostly by Neo-Nazis or skinheads.
In a personal statement, quoted by the NRC, Glaubitz indicated the behaviour of the Estonian government was beyond reproach as his partner was treated well on an official level.
The treatment by members of the Estonian public was another matter. "[Estonian] society is far from ready for two men, particularly if one of them is black," Glaubitz said.
The Ambassador and his partner are being transferred to a two-year assignment at the Consulate General in Montréal, Canada.
[Copyright Expatica News + ANP 2006]
Subject: Dutch news