WorldViews: INTERVIEW: The gay Latvian foreign minister whose coming out stunned Eastern Europe

By Michael Birnbaum, November 25, 2014

Earlier this month, Latvian Foreign Minister Edgars Rinkevics announced that he was gay, breaking a major barrier in eastern Europe’s socially conservative political scene, where openly gay public figures of any sort are extremely rare. The announcement provoked strong reaction in Latvia and its neighbors. Western European leaders congratulated Rinkevics on his courage. Some of Rinkevics’s political allies in Latvia said they would start a public discussion about granting more legal rights to domestic partners, same-sex or otherwise. Other lawmakers said they would try to block any efforts to liberalize those rules.

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