Now Reading
Pro-LGBT policies turn city into ‘center of HIV infections’, says Japanese assemblyman

Pro-LGBT policies turn city into ‘center of HIV infections’, says Japanese assemblyman

A Japanese city assembly member has said his city’s move to support sexual minorities would turn it into ‘the center of HIV infections’.

‘Some residents might worry that many LGBT people would be attracted to the city and the city could become the center of HIV infections,’ said Shigeta Okochi, a politician from the ruling party in Takarazuka, Hyogo Prefecture.

Okochi of the Liberal Democratic Party was referring to Mayor Tomoko Nakagawa’s pro-LGBT initiatives, such as the possibility of issuing same-sex marriage certificates from as early as October.

His remarks caused a 30-minute suspension of the assembly’s plenary session on Wednesday, while another assembly member called ¬†them discriminatory and inappropriate.

Okochi also claimed that educating students about sexual minorities ‘could encourage students to become LGBT people influenced by the environment,’ according to the Kyodo news agency.

The assembly is expected to discuss Friday possible actions against the 44-year-old politican, who has stood by his opinions.

Update :

Okochi withdrew his HIV remark and the assembly’s steering committee approved his request to strike it from the official record, according to the Kyodo news agency.

‘I have used an expression which could be misunderstood as homosexuality being closely related to HIV. I apologize,’ he told reporters after the committee meeting.