BBC Home > BBC News > Europe

Poland targets 'gay' Teletubbies

28 May 07 15:49 GMT
By Adam Easton
BBC News, Warsaw

A senior Polish official has ordered psychologists to investigate whether the popular BBC TV show Teletubbies promotes a homosexual lifestyle.

The spokesperson for children's rights in Poland, Ewa Sowinska, singled out Tinky Winky, the purple character with a triangular aerial on his head.

"I noticed he was carrying a woman's handbag," she told a magazine. "At first, I didn't realise he was a boy."

EU officials have criticised Polish government policy towards homosexuals.

Ms Sowinska wants the psychologists to make a recommendation about whether the children's show should be broadcast on public television.

Poland's authorities have recently initiated a series of moves to outlaw the promotion of homosexuality among the nation's children.

Tinky Winky's psychological evaluation is being treated fairly light-heartedly by many people here.

One radio station asked its listeners to vote for the most suspicious children's show. Some e-mailed in, saying that Winnie the Pooh had only male friends.

Even Ms Sowinska has backtracked a little, insisting that she does not believe the Teletubbies is a threat to the nation's children. But the evaluation is still going ahead and her office can recommend that the show should be taken off the air.

Poland was criticised recently after its education ministry announced plans to sack teachers who promote homosexuality.

Last month the European Union singled out Poland for criticism in its resolution condemning homophobia in the 27-member bloc.

Related BBC sites

*