Faroe Islands foreign minister dismissed after homophobic remarks

Access to the comments Comments
By Euronews  with AFP
Jenis av Rana is pictured during a Foreign Ministers' meeting at the Nordic Council's session in 2021.
Jenis av Rana is pictured during a Foreign Ministers' meeting at the Nordic Council's session in 2021.   -   Copyright  Mads Claus Rasmussen/Ritzau Scanpix via AP

The foreign minister of the Faroe Islands has been sacked by the territorial government after making homophobic remarks.

Jenis av Rana was widely criticised for stating that he could not support the leader of the Danish conservative party Søren Pape Poulsen, who is openly gay, as prime minister.

"Living as a so-called homosexual is against the basic law that I, my party, and I think the Faroe Islands follow," he said during a radio broadcast in late October.

The comments -- made ahead of Denmark's parliamentary elections, won by Mette Frederiksen's Social Democrats -- caused outrage and led to calls for av Rana's dismissal.

The Faroe Islands are a small, self-governing Danish territory in the North Atlantic and are represented in Denmark's parliament by two MPs.

The archipelago's government confirmed on Tuesday that av Rana had been removed as Minister of Foreign Affairs and Culture.

The former minister had also opposed recent law in the Faroe Islands that has granted equal rights and civil status to lesbian couples that have children.

Prime Minister Bárdur á Steig Nielsen said in the government's statement that his tolerance for av Rana "cannot be extended any further".