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UN Praises Conchita Wurst on LGBT Activism

by Jason St. Amand
National News Editor
Monday Nov 3, 2014

The United Nation's Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon spoke with "Eurovision" winner and international sensation Conchia Wurst Monday and praised the bearded drag queen for her fight against LGBT discrimination, Reuters reports.

Wurst won the singing completion for Austria back in May and Ki-moon called the singer's performances turned "Eurovision" into a "moment of human rights education" in a fight for diversity and tolerance.

Wurst, who was born Tom Neuwirth, wore a sharp navy blue dress and black high heels when she met Ki-moon. The two shook hands and joked with each other before Wurst sang to hundreds of cheering U.N. officials and diplomats at the United Nation's complex in Vienna.

"You just can be respected if you respect others," she said.

"This year I extended benefits to same-sex partners of U.N. staff members... Discrimination has no place in the United Nations," Ki-moon said to the crowd. "When I heard that she won this Eurovision song contest I immediately knew that she was a star of the world."

After Wurst won the singing competition, which drew in an audience of about 180 million in 45 countries, and returned to her home in Austria, she said: "I share the opinion that this was not a victory just for me but for the people who believe in a future that works without discrimination and is based on tolerance and respect. This transcends borders."

Though LGBT rights activists lauded her, ultra conservatives slammed the singer, saying she was promoting gay rights, with Russian President Vladimir Putin, who signed the infamous and highly controversial "homosexual propaganda" measure into law, accusing the West of trying to push gay rights on other countries.

Pink News reported Monday that former "Eurovision" commentator Sir Terry Wogan, 76, said he thinks Wurst made the competition show a "freak show" instead of a "foolish farce."

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