MK Nitzan Horowitz (Meretz) called on the Palestinian Authority to halt the persecution of homosexuals within its territory, and said Israel should provide gay Palestinian refugees with sanctuary.
During a Paris conference on gender and sexuality Friday Horowitz said, "I call on the Palestinian Authority from this conference to stop persecuting homosexuals. This situation is intolerable."
The Meretz MK wants Arab nations to sign an international declaration outlawing criminal prohibition of homosexuality. He added that Israel should also "improve its attitude towards religious gays".
Representatives from various nations signed a declaration against the outlawing of homosexuality at the end of the conference.
Horowitz also called on the international community to support Israel's efforts towards tolerance and openness. "Come and take part in our Gay Pride Parade, come and experience life in Israel," he told those present.
To Ynet he said, "I gave a speech at the opening of the conference and won raging applause. Many have invited me to visit their countries." Horowitz added that the representatives present at the conference included a few from Arab countries "where homosexuals are persecuted".
"It was nice to meet these people and to think that at least in this field, Israel is kind of a positive role model. I told of our struggle, what we have achieved, and what we would like to achieve in Israel," Horowitz said.
"I said Arab countries must stop persecuting gays and that Israel should support Palestinian homosexuals who flee because they fear for their lives. We need to give them sanctuary in certain cases."