British internal security organisation MI5 has hired the services of gay rights group Stonewall to help with its new gay and lesbian recruitment drive, the Sunday Telegraph newspaper reported.
MI5 will accordingly be listed in this year's edition of Stonewall's gay and lesbian graduates' recruitment guide.
"I am optimistic that in 10 to 15 years [MI5's] employment profile will look very much like modern Britain. There is no reason why there shouldn't be a lesbian or gay director-general," said Stonewall director Ben Summerskill.
A government official has confirmed the cooperation between MI5 and Stonewall, adding "the secret service seeks to reflect the broad range of society which it serves".
In the 1950s a spy ring was uncovered at Cambridge University, two members of which were gay. The ensuing scandal caused the secret service to ban homosexuals from top positions, because they feared such individuals would be open to blackmail. The ban was only lifted at the beginning of the 1990s. - Sapa-dpa