The government appoints a trans activist as an ambassador for sexual orientation and gender identity

Foreign Minister Santiago Cafiero appointed Alba Rueda as special representative for “sexual orientation and gender identity”

The national government today inaugurated the formation of extra-echelon positions Special Representative on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity” in the orbit of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and appointed Alba Wheelwho is the benchmark for the LGBTI+ movement, leads this unit which will be under the position of Deputy Secretary.

The appointment was made through Decree 227/2022 which was announced today in the Official Gazette and signed by the president Alberto Fernandezchief of staff, John Manzuro and the chancellor santiago cafiero.

“It is necessary to adopt the necessary measures and strengthen institutional resources that contribute to mainstreaming of gender and diversity approaches in all policies promoted by the National State, both at the local and international level”, showing the basis for such action.

In the world only four countries have diplomatic representatives of this characteristic: Jessica Stern, from United States of America, Special Envoy for the defense of the rights of the LGBTQ community in the world; Nick Herbert (Lord Herbert of South Downs), from great Britain, Special Envoy for LGTBI+ rights; Fabrizio Petri, from ItalySpecial Envoy for LGBTQI+ human rights and Sven lehmann, from Germanwas appointed as the federal government’s Commissioner for acceptance of sexual and gender diversity.

With broad militancy in egalitarian activism, Alba Rueda came to the Executive Branch in December 2019 and, since then, has held the position of Deputy Secretary for Diversity Policy at the Ministry of Women, Gender and Diversity. Thus, he became the first official with that hierarchical rank in the country’s history.. With the resolution of the new government, it will now go to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and will carry out, in an unprecedented manner in Argentine foreign relations, a diplomatic mission. In fact, will have the rank of “protocol” ambassador before the international concert.

According to the rules, Rueda will have the function of “assisting the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Trade and International Worship in representing National Countries in the presence of international organizations and forums on issues related to gender, diversity and the protection and promotion of the rights of LGBTIQ+ peoplecoordinate with the Ministry of Women, Gender and Diversity”.

Alba Rueda came to the Executive Branch in December 2019 and has since served as Deputy Secretary for Diversity Policy.  It will articulate policy with Foreign Minister Santiago Cafiero and Minister for Women, Gender and Diversity, Elizabeth Gómez Alcorta
Alba Rueda came to the Executive Branch in December 2019 and has since served as Deputy Secretary for Diversity Policy. It will articulate policy with Foreign Minister Santiago Cafiero and Minister for Women, Gender and Diversity, Elizabeth Gómez Alcorta

It must also “coordinate participation” other national representatives before international and intergovernmental organizations”, together with the imposition of activities to be carried out in Argentina “in accordance with international commitments”. In addition, he will have the task of “disseminating and promoting before international organizations and forums the actions, programs and plans developed in the country.”

The establishment of the new diplomatic post, which was announced in March and inaugurated this Tuesday, cause controversy in the specialized field. “With SK 227/22, they created an extra level position of Special Representative for Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs with the rank and hierarchy of Deputy Secretary. The accusation itself is nonsense and the State should not interfere in the private life of the official”, stressed the former ambassador to Israel and Costa Rica, Mariano Caucino.

Although this diplomatic position is rare in the world, several countries have been determined to promote diversity activism as another dimension of foreign policy. In June 2021, president Joe Biden appointed Jessica Stern as United States government’s Special Envoy for the promotion of LGBT+ human rights globally, fills a post that was created in the final year of Obama’s second term by Secretary of State John Kerry. The place has been empty for most of the Trump administration.

In an interview with infobaeStern recognizes the policy of the State of Argentina in this regard. “Latin America is at the forefront of LGBT+ rights and recognition, and my hope is that it will continue to be so, because no other region of the world has shown such momentum. The law to recognize transgender people approved by Argentina – enacted in 2012, during Cristina Kirchner’s presidency – is standard worldwide, “with a focus on the concept of self-determination,” he said in the report.

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Elena Eland

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