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Current Affairs

  • 6th February 2008

    Egypt accused of criminalising HIV positive gay men

    On Saturday a Cairo appeals court upheld their one-year prison sentence.

    1:11 PM — Four men convicted last month by a court in Cairo of consensual homosexual sex are the victims of state prejudice against people with HIV, according to a leading human rights organisation.A series of arrests began when one man, challenged by police during a street altercation with another man, told officers he is HIV positive.Both were arrested and investigated for homosexual conduct and had to undergo anal examinations that would be used as "proof" they had sex, says Human Rights Watch.

  • April elections likely in Italy after dissolution of parliament

    If new elections bring Mr Berlusconi and his allies back into office the gay rights agenda is likely to be abandoned completely.

    12:25 PM — The President of Italy today formally dissolved the country's parliament after the coalition government fell apart last month.Romano Prodi, who resigned as Prime Minister but remained in a caretaker role, is expected to hold a cabinet meeting later today to fix a date for new elections.Reports from Rome indicate that April 13th or 14th are the most likely dates. Romano Prodi's government fell after he lost a vote of confidence in the Italian Senate last week.

  • Fundamentalist Christian poster breached advert code 27

    The ASA ruled that the statement was “likely to be understood to represent the prevailing view of the gay community.“

    12:10 PM — A advertising poster for the Christian Congress for Traditional Values which claimed that gay people want to abolish families has been found to breach the advertising standards code.In an adjudication released today the Advertising Standards Authority judged the poster to be in breach of rules on social responsibility, decency, substantiation, truthfulness and matters of opinion.A mobile poster for the CCTV showed a family consisting of a man, a woman and a young son and daughter. Body copy beside it stated "GAY AIM: ABOLISH THE FAMILY."

  • Alleged rape victim is HIV positive 1

    Mr Wrench's defence barrister, Sarah Forshaw QC, told the court that the alleged victim did not mention his HIV status.

    11:50 AM — A court at the Old Bailey has been told that a 26-year-old man who accused a BBC Radio 4 reporter of raping him is HIV positive.Nigel Wrench, 47, was open about his status and had made a documentary, Aids and Me about his experiences living with HIV and a later diagnosis of AIDS.He is accused of drugging and sexually assaulting the 26-year-old after inviting him back to his flat in north London after meeting him at a New Years party.

  • Abercrombie store accused of displaying “obscene material” 1

    A police spokesman said the seizure was “prompted by several customer complaints, and the management of Abercrombie  Fitch was notified of those complaints.“

    11:30 AM — An Abercrombie Fitch store in Virginia Beach, Virginia, will soon be decked out as it always has been, with black and white photos of half-naked boys and girls frolicking in fields.That's because the city officials plan to return a pair of promotional photographs, one of which shows a shirtless man wearing jeans that reveal the top of his buttocks and another which shows a topless woman whose hand is covering a portion of her breast, that were taken from the store last weekend after a police officer cited its manager with violating city code.

  • Clinton and McCain score California victories 7

    John Mccain has made a number of big gains

    8:30 AM — New York Senator Hillary Clinton has been declared the winner over Illinois Senator Barack Obama in the Democratic race in California on Super Tuesday. Arizona Senator John McCain is the projected winner in the California Republican primary Super Tuesday results over former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney.With 16 percent of precincts reporting in the California Democratic primary, Mrs Clinton leads over Mr Obama 55 per cent to 33 per cent.

  • 5th February 2008

    Huckabee wins early Super Tuesday victory 1

    Mike Huckabee has won an early Super Tuesday victory

    11:15 PM — Former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee is the first winner in the massive Super Tuesday series of primaries and caucuses across the nation. Mr Huckabee won handily over former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney in the West Virginia state convention on Tuesday morning.Although Mr Romney has won the first round of votes in the West Virginia state convention, he did not take more than a 50 percent majority.

  • Hillary and Barack court gay voters 7

    Polling data released yesterday indicated that Senator Obama is edging into the lead over Senator Clinton.

    5:45 PM — The frontrunners for the Democratic party nomination for President of the United States have been highlighting their gay-friendly credentials ahead of today's vital primary contests.New York Senator and former First Lady Hillary Clinton posted a message on lesbian website ourchart.com outlining why she thinks LGBT Americans should vote for her.Illinois Senator Barack Obama has revealed that many gay supporters of John Edwards, who withrdrew from the race last week, are now supporting him.

  • Bishop regrets actions over gay cleric’s promotion 3

    The Rt. Rev. James Jones was one of nine Diocesan Bishops to have objected publicly to the proposed consecration of Dr John because of homosexuality.

    3:40 PM — The Bishop of Liverpool has said he "deeply regrets" his public opposition to the promotion of Canon Jeffrey John and said that in his view "gay rights are civil rights."Dr John was forced to step down as Bishop of Reading in 2003 amid controversy about his sex life. He is now Dean of St Albans.The Rt. Rev. James Jones was one of nine Diocesan Bishops who objected publicly to the proposed consecration of Dr John because he was in a gay relationship.

  • Turkish gay group court challenge delayed 5

    Turkey is a candidate country for EU membership, but concerns about human rights are one factor frustrating negotiations.

    2:40 PM — A group of supporters of a gay rights group threatened with closure have been accused of demonstrating outside a Turkish court.A department of the Istanbul Governor's office responsible for non-governmental organisations alleges that the group, Lambda Istanbul, violates Turkish laws on morality.They claim that Lambda violates both the Penal Code, as an association in violation of "law and morals," and Article 41 of the Turkish constitution, which is concerned with "the peace and welfare of the family."

  • Maverick Republican’s hopes for Alaska primary

    Ron Paul is hoping he can get his supporters to be the ones to make the trek to the Republican “preferential poll“ in Alaska.

    1:10 PM — Texas Congressman Ron Paul is hoping Alaska will be the one state where he can claim a surprise win on Super Tuesday among voters known for their unpredictability in choosing presidential candidates.Paul is banking on an organised campaign in the state, where few others have dared to tread to win voters' loyalty. There are no solid polls in place to take a look into the future of the Alaska races.

  • Boris upset at Elton’s support for rival 2

    Londoners will go to the polls in the Mayoral election on May 1st.

    12:55 PM — The Tory candidate for Mayor of London has revealed that he is on Sir Elton John's Christmas card list and was shocked and disappointed when the star gave his backing to Lib Dem hopeful Brian Paddick.The Conservative, who has the dubious honour of being backed by nightclub owner Peter Stringfellow, told LBC radio this morning that he hopes to recruit troubled singer Amy Winehouse to his campaign.

  • Men arrested in Senegal over “gay wedding” photos 5

    Senegal is one of the few Francophone African countries that penalise homosexuality.

    11:54 AM — Gay rights activists have called for a group of men arrested in Senegal on suspicion of homosexuality to be released from prison.In a letter to Senegalese Minister of Justice, the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission (IGLHRC) and PAN-Africa ILGA have demanded the immediate and unconditional release of up to 20 gay men.An unknown number have been arrested in Dakar, the Senegalese capital, since Sunday morning.

  • Candidates fight for votes in Alabama 7

    Romney had planned to make a stop in Birmingham, Alabama on Monday, but instead traveled to Tennessee and Georgia.

    11:30 AM — New York Senator Hillary Clinton and Arizona Senator John McCain are battling for a win in the Alabama primary results.Clinton holds a slight lead among voters over rival Illinois Senator Barack Obama going into the race, while McCain maintains a small margin over former Governor of Arkansas Mike Huckabee in the Super Tuesday primary.In a Rasmussen Reports poll conducted Jan 31, Clinton led Obama 46 to 41 percent among likely Democratic voters.

  • 4th February 2008

    Minister questioned at LGBT education conference 8

    Mr Brennan stressed that professional organisations such as teaching unions have a role to play.

    5:35 PM — A junior education minister defended the government's new guidance on homophobic bullying at last weekend's Schools OUT conference.Kevin Brennan, Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families, told an audience of around 100 who packed into London's Drill Hall that the new guidance was a major step forward."While we cannot force a positive attitude through law or through a policy, however robust, you have to have an environment, and schools must promote an environment, based on respect," he said.

  • Gay Radio 4 presenter raped New Year party man, court told 8

    Nigel Wrench denies all the charges against him (Photo:BBC)

    5:35 PM — An openly gay BBC Radio 4 presenter drugged and raped a man that he met at a New Years party, a court heard today.Nigel Wrench, 47, who is a regular presenter of the radio station's flagship evening news programme PM invited the man back to see his art collection and sit in on his show, the court was told.The Old Bailey heard that Mr Wrench snorted cocaine with the 26-year-old man and then poured him a glass of champagne, which made him feel "not at all well."

  • Speaker calls for transparency on MPs allowances 31

    177 other MPs, among them 95 Labour MPs, two members of the Cabinet, and 75 Tories, employ members of their family using tax payers money.

    4:40 PM — The Speaker of the House of Commons has urged MPs from all sides to move quickly to reform of the allowances system.A meeting of the Members' Estimates Committee is to consider new rules, including a ban on employing relatives with public funds.Speaker Michael Martin, a member of the committee, made a statement to MPs this afernoon. "We must take fully into account the public interest in transparency," he said.

  • Human rights group condemns Jamaica violence 28

    The Jamaica Forum for Lesbians All-Sexuals and Gays, JFLAG, brought the most recent attack to wider attention.

    2:40 PM — A leading US-based rights organisation has said that the latest incident of homophobic mob violence in Jamaica shows that the police in the Caribbean nation are failing in their duties.Scott Long, director of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Rights Programme at Human Rights Watch, said: "Gays and lesbians in Jamaica face violence at home, in public, even in a house of worship, and official silence encourages the spread of hate."The Jamaica Forum for Lesbians All-Sexuals and Gays, JFLAG, brought the most recent attack to wider attention.

  • Super Tuesday could decide the 2008 Presidential race 7

    A clear victory tomorrow for any of the four major candidates still in contention will almost guarantee them their party's nomination.

    2:20 PM — Tomorrow Democrats, Republicans and Independents in 24 US states will take part in the biggest vote before the Presidential election in November.At a series of caucuses and primaries across America, 41% of the pledged delegates for the Republican convention and 52% of the votes at the Democratic convention will fall behind one of the candidates still in the race.No wonder they call it Super Tuesday.

  • Boles donates money to Boris campaign 7

    Mr Boles was a strongly-tipped candidate for the Tory nomination for Mayor of London, but withdrew in July when he was diagnosed with Hodgkins Lymphoma, a type of cancer.

    1:45 PM — A leading gay Tory has donated £20,000 to the campaign to elect Boris Johnson as Mayor of London.Nick Boles was the frontrunner to be his party's candidate for Mayor until he withdrew from the race after being diagnosed with a form of cancer.Now it has emerged that he is among a list of donors to Boris' campaign, alongside property developers, hedge fund managers, lobbyists and art dealers.

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