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UN human rights office unveils gay-rights campaign

FILE - A protester throws an object during the first ever gay pride event in the Montenegrin seaside resort of Budva on Wednesday, July 24, 2013. Dozens of extremists shouting

FILE - A protester throws an object during the first ever gay pride event in the Montenegrin seaside resort of Budva on Wednesday, July 24, 2013. Dozens of extremists shouting "Kill the gays" attacked gay activists as they were gathering for the event in conservative Montenegro. Amid a surge of anti-gay violence and repression in several countries, the United Nations' human rights office on Friday, July 26, 2013 launched its first global outreach campaign aimed at promoting more tolerance and greater equality for lesbians, gays, transgender people and bisexuals. (AP Photo/Risto Bozovic, File)

NEW YORK (AP) - The United Nations' human rights office is launching its first global outreach campaign to promote more tolerance and greater equality for lesbians, gays, transgender people and bisexuals.

Called "Free & Equal," it's an unprecedented effort by the Office of the U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights to change public attitudes around the world on issues that have bitterly divided the U.N.'s own member states.

The multi-pronged campaign was announced Friday at a news conference in Cape Town, South Africa, the home country of human rights commissioner Navi Pillay.

It will include videos and public-service announcements distributed through social media, a new website, a series of fact sheets, and engagement by celebrities well-known in different regions of the world.


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