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Gay sex not a sin, says Liberal Democrat leader Tim Farron

Gay sex is not a sin, Tim Farron has said after days of pressure to clarify his stance on the issue.

The Liberal Democrat leader had faced criticism for failing to answer questions about his position on homosexuality.

He made clear he supported equal marriage and LGBT rights, but in a broadcast interview last week did not say whether or not it was a sin.

A day later in the House of Commons, after coming under fire from celebrities and fellow politicians, he said he did not think being gay was a sin.

But the questions did not go away, and when asked to be unambiguous on the issue of gay sex at the weekend, he replied "being gay is not a sin" before adding he was "getting tired of this line of questioning".

He has now made clear he does not believe gay sex is a sin, telling the BBC: "I don't believe gay sex is a sin.

"I take the view that as a political leader though my job is not to pontificate on theological matters.

"It seems to me that there is a General Election on at the moment, we need to be talking about big issues - health, social care, education, whether we're in the single market or not.

"And it occurs to me really that this had become a talking point, an issue."

Asked why he had not been clear earlier, Mr Farron said: "I was asked the question early on and I didn't want to get into a sort of series of questions unpicking the theology of the Bible.

"What I want is to make sure we deal with something that's become an issue."

Asked if he would maintain one Christian view privately and a separate different view publicly, he replied: "Well no, you asked me a question about what I felt about first of all, people who are gay and indeed also about gay sex, and I have said no, I do not feel that they are sinful.

"And I think that's something that's important to say when people get the wrong idea of you."

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