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Current Affairs

  • 15th April 2008

    Ken claims multiculturalism as “great achievement” 1

    Ken Livingstone, the Labour candidate, is seeking a third term in office.

    2:20 PM — At the launch of his community relations manifesto today the incumbent Mayor of London made a strong defence of multiculturalism, which he called "one of the greatest achievements of my administration." Ken Livingstone, who as the Labour candidate is seeking a third term in office, made no mention of the gay and lesbian community in his comments."I will continue to develop the positive celebration of London's diversity, he said.

  • INTERVIEW: The Socialist alternative for London 26

    In the 2004 Mayoral election Lindsey German won 61,000 first preference votes, or 3.2%.

    1:50 PM — Lindsey German may be known to some Londoners for her work with the Stop The War Coalition, but the party she represents is entirely new.The Left List is part of what used to be the Respect party.

  • Gay World Cup organisers say 90% of funding in place 2

    London 2008 will take place in Regent's Park between 24th and 30th August 2008.

    1:15 PM — The 2008 International Gay and Lesbian Football Association World Championship being held in London later this year has announced cash sponsorship from a website.The championship became an issue in the election for Mayor of London today when LGBT activist and Green party candidate Peter Tatchell attacked the incumbent for reportedly declining to contribute to the funding and or sign a letter of support for a grant application to the lottery fund.

  • Scots Parliament considers gay blood ban 18

    “Blood has no sexual preference and being gay does not mean that you sleep about and have serial sexual partners.“

    11:45 AM — A petition calling for an end to the blanket ban on blood donations from gay men will be considered by the Scottish Parliament today.The Scottish National Blood Transfusion Service maintains that it is not a question of being gay or bisexual but the risk involved.Rob McDowall, who has led the campaign against the ban, said:"Blood has no sexual preference and being gay does not mean that you sleep about and have serial sexual partners."

  • American Catholics think Pope is out of touch 26

    Pope Benedict XVI, who has been outspoken in his opposition to equal rights for LGBT people, will visit Washington and New York from today.

    11:20 AM — A wide-ranging poll of Roman Catholics in the US has found that two thirds of them feel the Church is out of touch with today's world.Just two years ago, when Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger was elected Pope, 52% of American Catholics held that view: now the figure is 62%.The figures come ahead of a Papal visit to the United States.Pope Benedict XVI, who has been outspoken in his opposition to equal rights for LGBT people, will visit Washington and New York.

  • DA asked to treat King killer as a juvenile 24

    Lawrence King, who self-identified as gay and wore feminine clothing, was shot in the head during a class on February 12th,

    11:06 AM — Lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans activists are urging that a 14-year-old boy who is to stand trial for the murder of his classmate be dealt with by a juvenile court.Lawrence King, who self-identified as gay and wore feminine clothing, was shot in the head during a class on February 12th, allegedly by classmate Brandon McInerney, 14, at E.O. Green Junior High School in Oxnard, California.McInerney has been charged as an adult and could face up to 24 years to life for the murder charge.

  • Obama lags behind Clinton in Pennsylvania poll 1

    On Monday, a new poll from the American Research group gave Clinton a 20% lead over Obama in Pennsylvania.

    10:30 AM — Following controversial remarks saying some working-class Americans are "bitter" and "cling to guns or religion", Democratic Presidential contender Barack Obama is facing a 20% drop against rival Hillary Clinton in a new Pennsylvania poll.In the new American Research Group poll, Clinton now leads Obama 57% to 37%. Previously, the two Democratic candidates were tied at 45% each in the statewide poll.On Monday, Illinois Senator Barack Obama continued defending remarks made at a private fundraiser in San Francisco.

  • Berlusconi back in power, but what about gay rights? 2

    Silvio Berlusconi with fellow conservative, George Bush

    1:37 AM — Conservative media tycoon Silvio Berlusconi has declared victory in the Italian general election as he looks set to begin his third term as prime minister after beating socialist Walter Veltroni.In a phone call to Rai TV, Signor Berlusconi said of his victory: "I'm moved, I feel a great responsibility. We have difficult months ahead that will require great strength."Berlusconi's right wing alliance is expected to have won 45.9 per cent of the vote, compared to 39.1 per cent for the left.

  • 14th April 2008

    Digby Jones to resign from Government

    Lord Jones may resign from the Government

    5:00 PM — The position of the Prime Minister, Gordon Brown is continuing to look shaky.The Trade Minister, Lord Digby Jones of Birmingham, the former Director-General of the CBI is to resign before the next election in order to avoid a row that could damage the Government. The Times reports that the controversial minister told business leaders and lobbyists his plans.

  • Berlusconi victory will stall gay rights in Italy 3

    With Mr Berlusconi and his allies back in office the modest gay rights agenda is likely to be abandoned completely.

    3:20 PM — Exit polls from last weekend's Italian general election are predicting a small majority for former Prime Minister, businessman and media mogul Silvio Berlusconi's right-wing group.The 71-year-old has had an interesting campaign, at one point mocking his left-wing opponents for not having many attractive female candidates.The public have been less than enchanted, going to the polls to determine who will lead Italy's 63rd government since 1945.

  • Pressure grows on EU over discrimination directive 2

    In 2004 Mr Barroso made a statement before the Parliament promising to personally ensure that the legal protections would be enlarged.

    2:40 PM — The European Commission has been urged by several leading groups in the European Parliament to implement a discrimination directive that covers sexual orientation.There have been strong indications from Commission President Jose Manual Barroso and employment, social affairs and equal opportunities commissioner Vladimir Spidla that the directive may focus on disability only.Article 13 of the Amsterdam Treaty requires EU member states to introduce legislation on discrimination.

  • Trans prisoner committed suicide, inquest rules

    The inquest in Bristol heard how Ms Woodhall was called a “transvestite“ by fellow inmates despite her transition.

    12:30 PM — A woman who hanged herself in her prison cell after complaining of harassment because she had transitioned committed suicide, an inquest into her death has ruled.Lisa Woodhall was serving a four and half year sentence after she slashed the throat of her boyfriend's ex-lover.She had complained that she was being victimised and picked on by other inmates because she had transitioned from being a man.

  • Wales may get “ex-gay” ministry 8

    Stephen Green is best-known as the head of anti-gay lobby group Christian Voice.

    12:10 PM — The controversial fundamentalist Christian Stephen Green has hinted that the controversial movement that encourages people to "pray away the gay" and become straight could be established in Wales.Mr Green, who is notorious for his protests at gay Pride events, made his remarks in a BBC Wales current affairs programme, Week In, Week Out. While being interviewed by H from Steps, also known as Ian Watkins, he told the former pop star, who came out in 2007, that he could "walk away" from homosexuality.

  • Ken releases list of celeb supporters 2

    A majority of opinion polls indicate a very tight race between Mr Livingstone and his Conservative rival Boris Johnson.

    11:15 AM — The Mayor of London Ken Livingstone has compiled a list of actors, entertainers and celebrities who support his campaign for a third term in office. Among his backers are Blur frontman Damon Albarn, comedians Bill Bailey and Jo Brand, artists Anthony Gormley and Banksy.

  • 13th April 2008

    Blears: BNP and UKIP voters will boost Boris 6

    Hazel Blears is in charge of the Labour party's local election campaign.

    1:50 PM — The Secretary of State for Communities has said that the Tory candidate for Mayor of London will "depend on attracting support in second preferences from BNP and UKIP supporters" to win the May 1st election.Hazel Blears, who is in charge of the Labour party's local election campaign, made her comments in an interview with The Sunday Telegraph in which she characterised the council elections as vital for David Cameron.

  • Schwarzenegger to fight against gay marriage ban 5

    Arnold Schwarzenegger has previously been opposed to gay marriage

    1:30 AM — The Republican governor of California, Arnold Schwarzenegger has said he will fight against any bans on gay marriage. He surprised delegates at the San Diego at the convention of the Log Cabin Republicans, the nation's largest gay Republican group.Mr Schwarzenegger has previously vetoed attempts to legalise gay marriage but said he will oppose a state wide vote for a constitutional ban on gay marriage: "I will always be there to fight against that."

  • 12th April 2008

    Istanbul gay group raided by police 2

    Lawyers for the Lambda Istanbul Cultural Centre later discovered that an accusation had been lodged against the association.

    6:00 PM — Police officers in Turkey have raided the offices of a leading LGBT organisation on the pretence that "frequent visits by transgender people" were grounds to issue a search warrant.Lawyers for the Lambda Istanbul Cultural Centre later discovered that an accusation had been lodged against the association for "participating in illegal prostitution activities, procuring transgender sex workers and sharing their earnings."More than a dozen plainclothes officers spent two hours at the centre on Monday afternoon.

  • 11th April 2008

    Map of the world plots LGBT rights 6

    To see the map click here.

    5:45 PM — A global gay rights federation is celebrating its 30th anniversary with an updated map of gay, lesbian, bisexual and trans rights across the globe.Founded in 1978, the International Lesbian and Gay Association (ILGA) is a federation of more than 600 groups in 90 countries campaigning for lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans and intersex (LGBTI) rights."A print version of the map will be sent to all members of ILGA in the following weeks," a spokesperson said.

  • Gay Eurovision fans threatened by Serb thugs 3

    Their threats have led some to question whether Belgrade is a suitable location for Eurovision.

    5:00 PM — The honour of hosting the Eurovision Song Contest has fallen to Serbia this year, and fascist groups in the country are already promising violence against people attending the festivities.Gay men are a particular target, according to the president of the fascist organisation Obraz, who announced his violent intentions in the pages of daily newspaper ALO! earlier this week.The newspaper ran a story on April 7th, calling Eurovision "gay youth day."

  • 80% of insurance companies failing gay men

    80% of frontline customer service staff of insurance companies gave incorrect information around gay men and insurance.

    4:15 PM — New research has found that many leading insurance providers in the UK are still sending gay men for unnecessary HIV tests.In a survey insurance company staff were all asked to provide their company's limit at which an applicant would be sent for an HIV test.Two companies, Royal Liver and Bright Grey, were praised for their industry-beating limit of £1,000,000 of cover without HIV testing for gay men within a civil partnership.

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