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Current Affairs

  • 4th March 2008

    Mayor backs Christian challenge over fostering

    Conservative councillor Pauline Latham, who holds the ceremonial post of Mayor of Derby, has backed the Johns.

    2:45 PM — The Mayor of Derby is backing a Christian couple who are appealing against a decision that they were not suitable foster parents.Eunice and Owen Johns approached the council about providing weekend respite care for children under 10.They were rejected by an adoption panel after it emerged that Mrs Johns, a Sunday school teacher, wanted any children in their care to go to church on Sundays.The Johns also refused to teach children that gay and lesbian relationships are normal, as required by gay equality laws.

  • Pope praises US opposition to gay rights 26

    The Pope will visit Washington and New York between April 15th and 20th.

    12:36 PM — The leader of the Roman Catholic church has welcomed the new United States Ambassador to the Vatican with praise for her country's opposition to abortion and gay marriage.Mary Ann Glendon, a close friend of President Bush, took up her appointment last month.Speaking in English Pope Benedict XVI said that he is "looking forward" to his five-day trip to the US next month.

  • Dutch stand up for gays at UN Human Rights council 1

    The UN Human Rights Council was established in 2006, and is holding its seventh session in Geneva from 3rd to 28th March.

    11:40 AM — The Foreign Minister of the Netherlands today told an international meeting that gay, lesbian, bisexual and trans people deserve equal rights.Maxime Verhagen made his remarks at the opening session of the United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva.In a wide-ranging speech he highlighted the rights of "children in Uzbekistan picking cotton for long hours for little or no wages" and proposed the EU move to ban on the sale of goods that have been produced "using any form of slavery."

  • Lesbian group criticise police in Croatia

    Ten people were injured when violence broke out at the gay Pride march in Zagreb.

    10:40 AM — A group representing lesbians in Croatia has questioned why only one person has been prosecuted for attacking last year's Pride parade in the capital city of Zagreb.Last week Josip Situm was convicted of endangering lives and property and ordered to undergo psychiatric treatment while behind bars after being found guilty of a hate crime.Police spotted him at the Pride event in Zagreb on 7th July 2007 with petrol bombs, but he fled the scene. Ten people were injured when violence broke out at the gay Pride march in Zagreb.

  • Battle for same-sex marriage continues in California

    Barring same-sex couples from marriage unconstitutionally discriminates on the basis of sex and violates the fundamental right to marry.

    10:30 AM — The California Supreme Court will today hear final arguments from same-sex couples who want access to civil marriage in the state.Attorneys will argue that California violates its own constitution by denying same-sex partners the right to marry.The California Supreme Court agreed to hear the case in 2006 after the California Court of Appeal reversed a decision by San Francisco Superior Court Judge Richard A. Kramer.

  • 3rd March 2008

    Obama uses Bible to defend civil unions 3

    Senator Obama continues to gain ground in the key primaries of Ohio and Texas, which will be held tomorrow.

    12:55 PM — Presidential candidate Barack Obama has defended his support of civil unions by referring to the Sermon on the Mount.The famous sermon given by Jesus, which includes the Beatitudes, the instruction to 'turn the other cheek' and the Lord's Prayer, is found in the book of Matthew in the New Testament.Senator Obama is thought to have been referring to Jesus' instruction to: "Do to others what you would have them do to you."

  • Jamaican gays reject tourist boycott over homophobia 2

    Hatred for gay people is often publicly expressed by political and religious leaders in Jamaica.

    12:35 PM — J-Flag, the Jamaican lesbian and gay rights group, has rejected calls for a tourist boycott in protest at homophobia on the island.Canadian newspapers have been focusing on the prejudice and violence gay people face in Jamaica since a leading activist sought asylum there, and some have called for Canadians to refuse to holiday in the popular destination.In a statement released yesterday, J-Flag, Jamaica's Forum for Lesbians, All-Sexuals and Gays, said it shared the frustration at the "slow progress towards transforming the social climate."

  • MP targeted by “Satan” after gay earthquake comments 14

    Shlomo Benizri, who is a member of the ultra-Orthodox Shas party, has been targeted by someone using the name “Satan.“

    12:02 PM — A member of Israel's parliament who generated headlines across the world when he linked earthquakes to gay rights has been receiving death threats.Shlomo Benizri, who is a member of the ultra-Orthodox Shas party, has been targeted by someone using the name "Satan."The Jerusalem Post reports: "It is unknown if those threats are connected to a suspicious envelope filled with white powder that the MK received last week."

  • Bishop stresses civil partnership is not marriage 3

    The term 'gay marriage' is often used to describe civil partnerships, despite significant differences.

    11:30 AM — A Church of England bishop has said it is "careless" to refer to civil partnerships as marriages.The Right Reverend Jonathan Gledhill, Bishop of Lichfield, also attacked the government for weakening the status of marriage."Most of my gay friends would want to distinguish between marriage, which is something that happens for a man and a woman," he said.

  • Civil partnership for senior Tory 7

    Mr Duncan, 50, is the Shadow Secretary of State for Business,  Enterprise and Regulatory Reform and MP for Rutland and Melton.

    10:55 AM — After a whirlwind 14-month romance leading Conservative MP Alan Duncan has proposed to his boyfriend.He met 39-year-old James Dunseath at a dinner arranged by friends and proposed to him on Valentine's Day during a holiday in Oman. They are expected to hold a civil partnership ceremony later this year.Mr Duncan, 50, is the Shadow Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform and MP for Rutland and Melton.

  • Clinton does comedy on Saturday Night Live

    Clinton provided an “editorial response“ and praised Amy Poehler's deft imitation of her on SNL.

    10:20 AM — After plugging the show during her televised debate with rival Barack Obama last week, Hillary Clinton dropped by Saturday Night Live this weekend for a surprise guest appearance.After a parody skit of the debate, Clinton provided an "editorial response" and praised Amy Poehler's deft imitation of her on SNL.For the second week in a row, Saturday Night Live opened with a scene featuring a Democratic debate.

  • 2nd March 2008

    Pensioner arrested after Manchester gay village murder 1

    Craig Douglas, who was straight and a father and stepfather, died on Monday after he was stabbed on Canal Street.

    5:20 PM — Police investigating the stabbing of a 25-year-old man in Manchester's gay village have arrested a pensioner today on suspicion of murder. Officers have not named the suspect as yet.At about 7.30pm on Monday evening Craig Douglas, who is straight, and another man were approached by two men and the four got into an argument on Canal Street close to its junction with Minshull Street and Aytourn Street.

  • 29th February 2008

    Jamaican police may get “sensitivity training”

    Sex between men in Jamaica is illegal, and punishable with up to ten years in jail, usually with hard labour.

    3:40 PM — The Deputy Commissioner of Police in Jamaica has said his officers need training to improve the way they deal with gay people.The Commonwealth country is notorious as one of the most homophobic places on earth.In the course of the last month a leading LGBT activist has fled the island claiming he was brutalised by police and an officer has gone into hiding after being abused by colleagues about his sexuality.

  • Man, 70, wanted over gay village murder 1

    Detectives need to speak to David Broady, 70, in connection with the murder of Craig Douglas.

    2:25 PM — Police have today released a second picture of a man they want to speak to in connection with the murder of a 25-year-old man.Detectives need to speak to David Broady, 70, in connection with the murder of Craig Douglas.They and are appealing for anyone who knows of his whereabouts to come forward.Anyone who sees him is asked not to approach him, but call 999 immediately. Police believe he is in Manchester.

  • Man jailed for making porn film with 16-year-old

    Ffoulkes paid the teenager £500 to appear in a photoshoot then directed him in a bareback porn film.

    1:10 PM — A 48-year-old man has been sentenced to two years and eleven months in prison for inciting a child into pornography.Rufus Ffoulkes, of Alexander Road, Lowestoft, has 58 previous convictions, mostly for fraud and theft. In 1981 he was convicted for having sex with a 13-year-old boy.Floulkes recruited young men for his homemade porn films from the website Gaydar. One brought along the 16-year-old boy.

  • Tutu to accept award from LGBT rights group 6

    In December he apologised to gay people all around the world for the way they have been treated by the Church.

    12:30 PM — The former Archbishop of Cape Town and Nobel Prize Laureate Desmond Tutu is to be honoured by the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission.The Anglican leader has been outspoken in his rejection of homophobia, often clashing with his more conservative African colleagues.He will be appearing at IGLHRC's A Celebration of Courage event in San Francisco on April 8th to accept the OUTSPOKEN Award.

  • Teacher’s victory in gay discrimination case 1

    The school's governing body accepted guilt and made an unreserved apology before the case went to full procedure.

    12:10 PM — A young gay teacher has received an unqualified apology from the governors of a school which formerly employed him after a landmark case for harassment under sexual orientation employment regulations.The school's governing body accepted guilt and made an unreserved apology before the case went to full procedure.This was the first case in UK law that saw a teacher taking his school to tribunal under the Employment Equality (Sexual Orientation) Regulations 2003.

  • Iranian asylum seeker’s deportation delayed

    Medhi will have to be repatriated to his country of origin because according to the British government, he does not run any risk there.

    10:34 AM — A gay teenager who was due to be deported to the UK earlier this week is still in detention in Holland.19-year-old Medhi Kazemi, who faces possible execution by stoning if he returns to Iran, fled for the Netherlands last year after his appeal for asylum in the UK was refused.He is awaiting the ruling of Dutch court next Monday on whether he should be returned to the UK, who want to deport him to Iran.

  • McCain addresses birthplace questions

    An article in the New York Times on Thursday revisted the question of whether or not McCain is qualified to hold the highest office in the country.

    1:30 AM — Arizona Senator John McCain has finally spoken out about persistent rumours that he is not a 'natural born citizen' of the United States and therefore not eligible to become President.McCain was born in the Panama Canal Zone and some have argued that under the definition of 'natural born citizen', he is cannot be president according to the U.S. constitution.He was born August 29, 1936 at the Coco Solo Air Base in the American-controlled Panama Canal Zone.

  • Presidential candidate picks Green running mate

    The Green Party currently already has four announced candidates.

    1:15 AM — Ralph Nader, who announced this week he will run again for President, has chosen former San Francisco Supervisor Matt Gonzalez as his running mate.Texas-born Gonzalez ran for mayor of San Francisco in 2003 as a Green Party candidate, but lost to Gavin Newsom."I want someone who shares my sense of justice and opposition to corporate state control over our society," Nader said of Gonzalez.

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