GENEVA - The main global grouping of gays and lesbians, ILGA, has been formally recognized by the United Nations against strong opposition from African and Islamic countries, according to a UN report issued on Tuesday.
Human rights activists said the move, by the world body's Economic and Social Council or ECOSOC, marks a major breakthrough for sexual minorities at the UN at a time when they are under increasing pressure in some developing countries.
In a vote overturning the stand of a New York-based UN committee, ECOSOC approved the granting of consultative status to ILGA -- which has been seeking admission as a recognized non- governmental organization (NGO) for over a decade.
Consultative status means ILGA -- the International Gay and Lesbian Association which says it has 670 member groups in over 110 countries -- can attend UN meetings, speak, and provide information to UN bodies on treatment of gays.
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