Greek MP in anti-gay slur against Luxembourg PM
A staunchly religious Greek lawmaker was widely criticised Friday after posting an anti-gay slur targeting Luxembourg Prime Minister Xavier Bettel.
Nikos Nikolopoulos, head of the small Christian Democratic party, tweeted on Thursday: “From a Europe of nation states to a Europe of faggots!!!”
The independent MP’s attack came after Bettel, who is openly homosexual, announced plans to wed his male partner in 2015, when a law on gay marriage comes into effect in Luxembourg.
In a tweet of his own, Bettel retorted that relations between Greece and Luxembourg would not be affected by the comments of an “isolated” politician.
Other independent MPs on Friday called on the devoutly Greek Orthodox Nikolopoulos to resign from their group in parliament, calling his comments “unacceptable, provocative and racist”.
“Mr Nikolopoulos always expresses himself in a way close to the feelings of Greek society,” his spokesman told To Vima radio on Friday.
Gays in Greece lack many of the basic rights and legal provisions enjoyed in other European countries — they are still fighting for the recognition of same-sex marriage, access to IVF treatment and the right to adopt.
Hate speech is rife and human rights groups have reported a rise in attacks in violent attacks on gays, adding that police often turn a blind eye to such incidents.