Belgium: Request for police to pay more attention to Muslim homophobia

Belgium: Request for police to pay more attention to Muslim homophobia

Parliament member Bruno Tuybens (SPA, Flemish socialists) wants the police to pay more attention to homophobia among fundamentalist Muslims.  "The growing aversion of homosexuality among radical Muslims in our country is a great concern.  The police has an important role to play, also in the field of prevention," he says.

According to Tuybens, Islamic websites are constantly spouting 'reprehensible notions about homosexuality'.  "It's of course an exceptionally complex matter, to which we should respond in a multidisciplinary [manner]," he explains.  "Education should be more attentive to sexual diversity.  Additionally, the police also has a very important role to play, not only in the field of repression, when crimes happen, but also in the field of prevention."

In response to a parliamentary query by Tuybens, the minister of internal affairs Annemie Turtelboom (Open Vld) said that in the police education program deals with the specific problematics of discrimination, including homophobia.  Moreover, the Equality and Diversity service of the federal police has a knowledge center which gathers expertise and knowledge about homosexual leanings and homophobia, among other things.  Police agents are encouraged to register homophobic crimes.

Nonetheless Tuybens asks the federal government to pay more attention and to invest in the education of the police regarding these problematics.  He adds that gays in the Muslim community should also be cared for, as they're in a very stigmatized situation and literally enter meetings by the side-door.

Source: HLN (Dutch)

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