The Executive Yuan attempted to defuse Premier William Lai’s first potential gaffe since coming to office two weeks ago.
At a meeting with several medical contribution award winners Friday, Lai pointed out that same-sex intercourse between men is currently the leading cause of AIDS in Taiwan, replacing the sharing of drug needles.
When asked by the press after the event if his remarks have discriminated against the gay community, Lai stressed that he does not disrespect homosexual persons and was merely citing a statistical fact to highlight the achievement of the medical professionals who helped reduce AIDS transmission rates by tackling drug needle sharing. Lai also stressed that he supports the rights of people “to live together with the person they love.”
Executive Yuan spokesman Hsu Kuo-yung (徐國勇) explained later that the premier was referring to “unsafe sex” and reiterated that he meant no disrespect to the gay community. Hsu also offered to apologize if his boss’s comment has created any misunderstanding. •
The China Post staff