Page last updated at 10:53 GMT, Thursday, 14 August 2008 11:53 UK

No Brown rebuke over gay comments

Iris Robinson
Iris Robinson will not be reprimanded over her comments

Iris Robinson will not be rebuked by Prime Minister Gordon Brown over her comments on homosexuality, Downing Street has said.

A petition on the Number 10 website calling for the Strangford DUP MP to be reprimanded was signed by more than 15,000 people.

Mrs Robinson described homosexuality as an abomination in a radio interview.

Downing Street said there was no constitutional role for the PM to reprimand individual MPs.

It said members "are accountable to their electorate for their own comments".

It added that the government is committed to strong equality legislation in Northern Ireland.

"The government's vision is an equal, inclusive society in Northern Ireland, where everyone is treated with respect and where opportunity for all remains a priority," it said.

The petition was signed by 15,703 people.

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