Thursday, 24 March 2022
Ceisteanna Eile - Other Questions
I found the bilateral engagements with a number of ministers particularly beneficial. I met ministers from Belgium and from Sierra Leone where we discussed the support that Irish Aid is giving there. With Belgium we discussed issues to do with their approach to domestic violence. I met the British minister on women's issues and it was a very useful engagement there. In particular, I had an engagement with the vice president of Iran, where I took the opportunity to discuss issues to do with the response to the refugees in Ukraine, and to refugees generally such as in Afghanistan and Syria.
I also took the opportunity to raise the importance of the protection of LGBT rights in Ireland. I asked the minister for women in Iran to reflect on the fact that Ireland has moved a long way in our approach to LGBT rights from 30 years ago to our approach now, and I suggested that, perhaps, such a journey should also be travelled in Iran.