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Opposition calls for apology on rainbow flag issue

Published:Wednesday | June 15, 2016 | 10:07 AM
Opposition spokesman on Foreign Affairs, Morais Guy says he is surprised the Jamaican Government has to be reminded about the conduct of business on premises on which Embassies and High Commissions are located.

The parliamentary opposition is calling for Jamaica’s foreign affairs ministry to apologise to the Government and people of the United States for statements by Attorney General, Marlene Malahoo Forte.

On Monday night, Malahoo Forte triggered a social media firestorm after posting on Twitter that she found it disrespectful of Jamaican laws that the US embassy had erected a rainbow flag following Sunday’s deadly shooting at an Orlando gay nightclub.

The rainbow flag is the symbol of the lesbian, gay, bi-sexual and transgender (LGBT) community.

Following the tweet, the US Embassy asked the attorney general to explain her legal reasoning behind her claim that the erection of the rainbow flag disrespected Jamaican laws.

Many on social media have condemned Malahoo-Forte’s utterance, while others have supported her.

However, Opposition spokesman on Foreign Affairs, Morais Guy says he is surprised the Jamaican Government has to be reminded that the conduct of business on premises on which Embassies and High Commissions are located must be regarded as business being conducted on foreign soil.

He says the opposition believes there is a requirement for clarification and, if necessary, an apology by Jamaica’s Foreign Ministry.

Meanwhile, the attorney general has refused to speak with members of the media about her controversial tweet.

Malahoo Forte was pursued by members of the media for a comment as she left Gordon House yesterday afternoon where she attended a sitting of the House of Representatives.

Pressed for a response as she walked to her car, Malahoo Forte held her head low, gave smiles and ignored the requests of the journalists.