Faroese Minister Fired After Statements Against Queer People

Jenis av Rana
Jenis av Rana during an Arctic Circle 2022 debate. (Photo: Trine Jonassen)

The Faroese Minister of Foreign Affairs, Jenis av Rana, has been fired after numerous statements against queer people. A new election will therefore be held on the Faroe Islands.

The Faroese Minister of Foreign Affairs Jenis av Rana (69) has been fired from his ministerial post. This is reported by the Faroese government in a press release.

Jenis av Rana's latest outburst about queer people concerned the Conservative Party's Chairman Søren Pape Poulsen. During the election campaign in the Faroe Islands recently, the former minister said that he could not support Pape as prime minister because he is gay.

On Tuesday, the opposition announced a motion of no confidence to the government as a result of the foreign minister's homophobic statements, but just before the government was to vote on the proposal, Prime Minister Bárður à Steig Nielsen announced that Jenis av Rana had been fired. Rana is the leader of Miðflokkurin, a Christian conservative party also known as the Center Party.

New election

After Rana's firing, Miðflokkurin withdrew its support for the government. This means that the Faroese government has now lost its majority. Thus, the government has announced new elections on the 8th of December. 

Nielsen announced the new election from the Parliament's speaker's chair on Wednesday.

Motion of no confidence to the government as a result of the foreign minister's homophobic statements

Against partnership

Before the election in Denmark, Rana stated that the Conservative Party's leader, Søren Pape Poulsen, would not be suitable as Danish Prime Minister because he is gay.

"Living as a so-called homosexual is against my own personal constitution, as well as my party's, and which I think the Faroe Islands should also have," he said.

It is not the first time Jenis av Rana has expressed hateful attitudes towards queer people. The 69-year-old doctor has been opposed to registered gay partnerships for many years.

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This article was originally published in Norwegian and has been translated by Birgitte Annie Molid Martinussen.