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Grenada considering ban on gay cruises, reports say

BY JOHN GODDARD, The [Toronto] Star

Grenada is questioning whether to allow entry to ship passengers on all-gay cruises, news reports from the Caribbean island say.

"We have not taken a policy as to whether the ships should land in Grenada or not," Tourism Minister Clarice Modeste-Curwen recently told the Grenada Advocate.

"As a government, our policy is that we do not support it (homosexuality)," the minister also told the Grenada Broadcasting Network. "But are we going to put a barrier that says in any port of entry that if somebody is gay they should be debarred from coming to this country ...? This is my question. What does the Grenadian community want of us?"

The minister did not return calls , and nobody at the prime minister's office, Grenada's embassy in Ottawa or its consulate in Toronto would speak to the issue.

Gay cruises have run into problems in the Caribbean before, said Helen Kennedy, head of the Toronto-based gay rights group Egale.

"In 1998, the Cayman Islands turned away a gay cruise," Kennedy said. "Then in 2000, the Cayman Islands were forced to implement a non-discriminatory policy because they are a British territory."

Protesters met gay cruises in the Bahamas in 2004 and in St. Vincent last year, she said.

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