• Kyodo

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The municipal assembly of Miyakonojo, Miyazaki Prefecture, decided Friday to exclude sexual minorities, including homosexuals, from its ordinance on human rights protection.

The 2004 ordinance stipulated that the city respects the human rights of every person “regardless of gender or sexual orientation,” but the assembly approved the new ordinance after deleting the passage on sexual minorities.

It is rare to see a passage referring to homosexuals in local government ordinances on human rights protection.

A city official said removing the passage does not change the overall meaning of the ordinance.

Some assembly members and human rights activists said it would lead to ignoring the human rights of minorities and their existence.

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