June 5, 2013 at 9:20 pm EDT | by Michael K. Lavers
Kerry acknowledges Pride month
Sen. John Kerry has been tapped to become the next secretary of state (photo public domain)

Secretary of State John Kerry (photo public domain)

WASHINGTON—Secretary of State John Kerry on Tuesday issued a statement acknowledging LGBT Pride month.

“44 years after Stonewall, we see incredible progress in the fight to advance the human rights and fundamental freedoms of LGBT people, both here in the United States and globally,” he said. “Protecting universal human rights is at the very heart of our diplomacy, and we remain committed to advancing human rights for all, including LGBT individuals.”

The statement comes against the backdrop of same-sex marriage advances in Uruguay, New Zealand, Brazil, France and the United Kingdom that have taken place in recent weeks.

Kerry also acknowledged anti-LGBT discrimination, persecution and violence remain endemic in many countries across the world.

“LGBT persons must be free to exercise their human rights — including freedom of expression, freedom of religion and freedom of assembly and association — without fear of reprisal,” he said.  “Human rights and fundamental freedoms belong to all individuals, regardless of their sexual orientation or gender identity.”

Michael K. Lavers has been a staff writer for the Washington Blade since May 2012. The passage of Maryland's same-sex marriage law, the HIV/AIDS epidemic, the burgeoning LGBT rights movement in Latin America and the consecration of gay New Hampshire Bishop V. Gene Robinson are among the many stories he has covered since his career began in 2002. Follow Michael

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