People who criticise gay sexual relations for religious or moral reasons are increasingly being attacked and vilified for their views, a Vatican diplomat told the United Nations Human Rights Council on Tuesday.
Archbishop Silvano Tomasi said the Roman Catholic Church deeply believed that human sexuality was a gift reserved for married heterosexual couples. But those who express these views are faced with "a disturbing trend," he said.
"People are being attacked for taking positions that do not support sexual behaviour between people of the same sex," he told the current session of the Human Rights Council.
"When they express their moral beliefs or beliefs about human nature ... they are stigmatised, and worse -- they are vilified, and prosecuted.
"These attacks are violations of fundamental human rights and cannot be justified under any circumstances," Tomasi said.