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August 2007

  • 20th August 2007

    Britney Spears lesbian allegations denied

    Despite the suggestive photos, Funk insists she and Spears had a platonic working relationship

    11:07 AM — Britney Spears' former assistant Shannon Funk has rebuked press reports she had a lesbian fling with the troubled pop star.The US edition of Ok! magazine last week published photos of Spears, 25, and Funk, 21, skinny dipping together in a swimming pool, with Funk cuddling and kissing Spears on the cheek.Funk was fired by Spears last month after only a month's employment. She was assisting Spears during her disastrous photo shoot and interview with Ok!

  • US black congregations split over gay issues 1

    The developing dispute divides the few black churches willing to welcome gays and black denominations that consider homosexuality a sin.

    11:00 AM — Conflicting views on homosexuality are now sparking disputes in black churches in the United States, just as they have done in predominately white Protestant denominations for years."It's going to be a real challenge," said the Rev. Carlton W. Veazey, founder of the National Black Religious Summit on Sexuality, reports United Press International."We're just beginning to really deal with it."

  • 17th August 2007

    Ugandan LGBT community speaks out against gay hate 5

    “We were treated in a degrading and inhumane way,“ said  Victor Juliet Mukasa, leader of the Sexual Minorities Uganda (SMUG), a coalition of LGBT rights groups.

    4:30 PM — Gay rights activists in Uganda have spoken out about the prejudice LGBT people face in the country.In a show of defiance and bravery, around 30 people gave a press conference, the first by LGBT activists, drawing attention to the state-sponsored homophobia and transphobia they face every day.Some of the activists wore masks for fear of being identified. Ugandan law outlaws homosexuality as "against the order of nature."

  • Faroe Islanders celebrate first year of LGBT protection 1

    During a weekend of festivities, various panels and movie screenings will take place and one of the panels will focus specially on students in higher education.

    1:17 PM — The Faroe Islands are celebrating gay Pride this weekend, and this year is particularly special.In December discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation was criminalised, after a very close vote in the country's parliament, the Faroese Løgting.The islands, a self-governing province of Denmark, are situated halfway between Iceland and Norway. They have a population of 48,000 people.

  • Mayor praises gay professionals community

    The Mayor's comments come as the networking organisation prepares to celebrate its two-year anniversary in September.

    11:35 AM — Ken Livingstone, Mayor of London, a long-time supporter of all things gay, has praised Village Drinks, the social event and online community for gay professionals.What started as a small social gathering for gay networking two years ago has grown into a important part of the London landscape for professional gay and lesbians in the capital."I congratulate Village Drinks for establishing itself as a key social and professional network for lesbian and gay Londoners over the past two years," the Mayor said.

  • Gay activist questioned over outing politician 2

    Mr Chuev is one of the most outspoken opponents of gay rights.

    11:30 AM — Moscow Gay Pride organiser and gay rights activist Nicolas Alexeyev will be questioned next week in relation to a criminal investigation after he outed a Russian MP on live television.The charges arise from comments he made on live TV in June, when he outed politician Alexander Cheuv as a homosexual.To prove that he is guilty of slander, Russian investigating authorities will have to demonstrate that calling Mr Chuev 'gay' spoilt his reputation or dignity.

  • Soho Pride will be celebrated this weekend 4

    Soho Pride has become a popular day out for London' gay clubbing community.

    11:02 AM — The streets that constitute London's gay village will get their own party this Sunday as Soho's Pride event takes place.Instead of a parade, various stages will be playing music from midday. Soho Square, Carlisle St and Rupert Street will be closed to traffic.QX magazine will be hosting a stage featuring performances from drag queen Jodie Harsh and the Powder Puff Girls.

  • TURING: The case for a boycott 4

    Beheadings and fatal lashings are still common in Saudi Arabia.

    10:40 AM — Despite reasonable arguments to the contrary, it is better stay away from homophobic countries.The United States, not particularly known for its gay rights record, surprised a good many people in 2005 when its State Department, in its annual report on human rights, included for the first time a list of countries guilty of LGBT abuses.A painful evidence of the Bush administration's hypocrisy, it may well have been.

  • 16th August 2007

    Banged up Bad Girls to hold gay fundraiser

    Tickets for the Stonewall benefit night cost £50 and include a top-price theatre seat, post-show drinks and the chance to meet the show's cast.

    6:38 PM — It's been a while since the heavy metal doors slammed on the inmates of HMP Larkhall for the last time, but now those bad girls are back and, boy, are they making a song and dance about it.Bad Girls The Musical, currently previewing at the Garrick Theatre in London's West End, is teaming up with Stonewall for a special fundraising benefit night on 6th September.The event will raise money for the gay equality charity's campaigning work around homophobic bullying and lesbian health.

  • Bigot of the Year nominee wants to come to Stonewall Awards 52

    Yesterday Stonewall announced that its second annual awards ceremony will be held on November 1st at the Victoria  Albert Museum in London.

    5:40 PM — One of the nominees for this year's Stonewall 'Bigot of the Year' award has said she is honoured to be nominated.The award is given to an individual who has gone out of their way to harm, hurt or snub lesbians, gay men and bisexuals in the last 12 months. Last year's winner was Radio 1 DJ Chris Moyles.Roman Catholic activist Patricia McKeever responded to a posting about the second annual Stonewall Awards on a blog.

  • Hotel chain seeks gay suppliers 1

    In April, Marriott became a corporate member of the US National Gay and Lesbian Chamber of Commerce.

    5:07 PM — Marriott International, Inc. today announced plans to increase spending among diverse suppliers to 15% by 2009.Additionally, the programme will expand to include a new category for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) suppliers and those in international markets."Last year, our company reached record levels in spending," said Mike Tobolski, senior director, Diversity Initiatives, Marriott International, Inc.

  • Crime authors clash over lesbian thrillers 1

    Ms McDermid, 52, a former journalist, also attacked the general sexist attitude towards female writers and violent content in the press.

    4:05 PM — One of the UK's leading crime novelists has been denounced by a lesbian writer amid claims of prejudice.Ian Rankin, best known for the Inspector Rebus series of novels, said last year that women writers are now writing the most explicitly violent books, and that most of those authors are lesbians.Rival novelist Val McDermid used an appearance at the Edinburgh International Book Festival to lambast Mr Rankin, calling his comments "arrant rubbish."

  • Comment: My journey from scared teen to gay activist

    It was my goal to make sure that no one went through the isolation and harassment that I experienced.

    1:35 PM — The first time I came to the UK, I was amazed by its history, architecture and bustling cities.Now, over ten years later, I have come back to experience this amazing place once again.As a third year student from the University of California Santa Cruz, I am currently doing a full time internship with the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Trans (LGBT) History Month and Schools OUT.

  • Iranian teenagers spared death penalty for gay abuse 1

    The judges of Branch 74 of Tehran province's general criminal court ruled that the teenagers, Ahad and Milad, had not reached mental maturity and instead sentenced them to ten years in prison.

    11:59 AM — A court in Tehran has spared two teenagers found guilty of sexually abusing a 12-year-old boy from hanging.US gay rights activist Michael Petrelis reports that the the judges of Branch 74 of Tehran province's general criminal court ruled that the teenagers, Ahad and Milad, had not reached mental maturity and instead sentenced them to ten years in prison.In front of the five judges, the teenagers first admitted that they lured the boy into a house.

  • Mayor hits back over Blue Peter row

    A statement from the Mayor's office plays down the significance of Ken Livingstone's comments at the launch of the Hovis London Freewheel.

    11:25 AM — The Mayor of London has defended his behaviour at the launch of a cycling event attended by Blue Peter presenter Konnie Huq.Yesterday the BBC apologised to the openly gay London Assembly member Brian Coleman and conceded that Ms Huq should not have attended the event as the Mayor made comments of a political nature.A statement from the Mayor's office plays down the significance of Ken Livingstone's comments at the launch of the Hovis London Freewheel.

  • Brazilian football’s gay rumours land judge in trouble

    The judge said football was a virile masculine sport and not a homosexual one.

    10:59 AM — Football is for real men, not gays.That was the stance Brazilian judge Manoel Maximiniano Junqueira Filho decided to take when making a ruling in a defamation case appearing before his bench.That may be his sentiments, but the law doesn't call for that sort of ruling and now the judge could face legal actions himself.The case was brought earlier this month by Richarlyson Barbosa Felisbino, a San Paulo player.

  • Jodie Foster’s rare interview dodges sexuality questions 7

    The 44-year-old actress is making the rounds to promote her latest strong-willed woman role in the film, The Brave One. photo: alan light@flickr.com

    10:46 AM — Ever the elusive two-time Oscar winner, Jodie Foster granted a rare one on one interview to More Magazine, the publication for "mature women," and opened up about aging in Hollywood, plastic surgery and privacy.And on the latter topic, Jodie Foster kept mum about her sexuality, never once discussing her long rumoured partner Cydney Bernard and, true to form, keeping it vague when it comes to her kids.The 44-year-old actress is making the rounds to promote her latest strong-willed woman role in the film, The Brave One.

  • Trans group to attend Independence Day celebrations

    Indonesia is made up of an archipelago of 18,108 islands and is the fourth most populous nation in the world.

    10:25 AM — Sixty-two years ago, Indonesia declared its separation from the Netherlands and began a four-year war to try and maintain its independence.This week, members of the Yogyakarta Transvestites Organisation are planning their own coup by being involved in the anniversary celebration.The 265 members of the YTO group hope to be involved in the occasion, but are aware of the dangers associated with asserting their presence.

  • 15th August 2007

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    5:14 PM — outbound links

  • BBC apologises for Blue Peter presenter

    BBC deputy director-general said that Ms Huq's appearance at the press conference had been arranged by her agent without informing Blue Peter production staff. photo: BBC publicity

    5:14 PM — An openly gay member of the London Assembly has accepted an apology from the deputy director-general of the BBC over an incident involving a Blue Peter presenter.Brian Coleman, deputy chairman of the London Assembly and Assembly Member for Barnet and Camden, complained after Konnie Huq appeared at the Mayor of London Ken Livingstone's weekly press conference.In the course of his remarks to journalists the Mayor made political comments about Mr Coleman.

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