While President Donald Trump has met with many male heads of government, First Lady Melania Trump has often mingled with their wives. But on Thursday, Mrs. Trump was introduced to the First Gentleman of Luxembourg.
Gauthier Destenay, the husband of Luxembourg’s Prime Minister Xavier Bettel, joined Trump and other spouses for a dinner while their significant others attended a gathering as part of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) conference in Brussels, Belgium.
Prime Minister Bettel, 44, and Belgian architect Destenay entered a civil partnership in 2010 and married in 2015 after Luxembourg’s legislators approved gay marriage. Bettel became the first openly gay Prime Minister of Luxembourg in December 2013, after an election campaign in which his sexuality was not a secret nor an issue.
Bettel is the world’s only gay head of government since Iceland’s former Prime Minister Johanna Sigurðardóttir, a lesbian, and Belgium’s Elio Di Rupo finished their mandates in 2013 and 2015 respectively.
“I have just one life, and I don’t want to hide my life,” Bettel previously said in an interview. “But I was not the ‘gay candidate.’ People didn’t vote for me because I’m gay or I’m straight.”
In April, Bettel and Destenay irked conservative members of the Catholic Church when they were invited to Rome by Pope Francis to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the European Union’s founding Treaty Of Rome. Others saw the visit as a “powerful message” on the Vatican’s position on gay rights.
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Also in attendance at the dinner with Destenay and Trump were First Lady of France Brigitte Macron, First Lady of Turkey Emine Gulbaran Erdogan, Queen Mathilde of Belgium, Ingrid Schulerud, Desislava Radeva, Amelie Derbaudrenghien, Mojca Stropnik and First Lady of Iceland Thora Margret Baldvinsdottir.
Earlier in the day, President Trump came under fire for appearing to shove Montenegro Prime Minister Dusko Markovic aside to get to the front of a group during a photo-op with NATO leaders.
Members were seen walking together to get to a meeting when Trump emerged from behind and pushed Markovic aside, stepping in front of him. The president then smugly straightened in his jacket.
“Some of the leaders interacted with one another on stage, but not Trump,” members of the press stated in a pool report. “He stood silently, shifting his stance at moments and looking around.”
They said, “Trump smiled for a brief moment, but otherwise kept a serious, perhaps even stern, expression on his face for the duration of the photo-op.”