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Current Affairs

  • 21st February 2008

    Malta’s gay group ask for equal rights

    Malta, a British colony until 1964, has around 400,000 inhabitants and is the smallest EU state in terms of both size and population.

    12:50 PM — The gay, lesbian, bisexual and trans communities in the tiny EU nation of Malta have presented a petition asking for a range of measures to be introduced to protect them through the law, and have received the backing of a fringe political party.Alternattiva Demokratika leader Harry Vassallo said yesterday that the recognition of gay rights would be a step forward, according to the Times of Malta.He said he was supporting the petition organised by the Malta Gay Rights Movement.

  • Stonewall advert vandalised in Blackburn 5

    The campaign, originally designed for schools, was developed in collaboration with 150 secondary school pupils and teachers for Stonewall.

    12:35 PM — One of 600 billboard adverts questioning homophobia in schools that have been displayed across the country has been attacked by vandals.The poster in the town of Blackburn, was "covered in abusive graffiti," the Lancashire Telegraph reports.Advertising space in England, Scotland and Wales was donated to gay equality organisation Stonewall by Titan Outdoor Advertising Ltd.The message - 'Some people are gay. Get over it!' - is displayed in giant, tabloid-style capital letters, on a bright red background.

  • Black US state legislator comes out

    Bartlett is a freshman lawmaker in Connecticut, representing Bethel, Danbury and Redding.

    12:10 PM — Democratic Connecticut State Representative Jason Bartlett made the decision on Thursday to come out publicly as a gay man.Bartlett says he has always preferred to keep his personal life private, but felt the announcement was needed to quell the rumours about his sexual orientation.Bartlett's coming out makes him unique in the political world as the first openly gay black state legislator.

  • Obama’s momentum is a serious challenge to Clinton

    Obama now has 1,358 of the 2,025 delegates needed to win the nomination, compared with Clinton's 1, 267 delegates.

    12:01 PM — In politics, the operative rule to live by is -"it ain't over till it's over" — and the Democratic national convention is still six months away. Anything can happen.But, and this is a BIG 'but,' with his blowout wins in Hawaii and Wisconsin's open primary on Tuesday, Illinois Senator Barack Obama has now won ten contests in a row in the Presidential race against New York Senation Hillary Clinton, once considered the Democratic party's "inevitable" nominee.

  • 20th February 2008

    Israeli politician claims gays cause earthquakes 14

    Mr Benizri's comments echo those of fundamentalist Christians.

    6:25 PM — An outspoken member of Israel's parliament has said recent earthquakes that have hit the country are a consequence of gay rights laws.Shlomo Benizri, who is a member of the ultra-Orthodox Shas party, was speaking in a Knesset (parliament) debate on earthquake preparedness.After reading passages from the Old Testament, he said that in his view one cause of earthquakes is that "the Knesset gives legitimacy, to sodomy.

  • Man arrested on suspicion of cruising murder 9

    The victim was stabbed at 3pm yesterday in toilets near Walton Bridge.

    5:50 PM — A 29-year-old man handed himself in at a police station earlier today and has been arrested on suspicion of murdering a 50-year-old gay man.The murder suspect will be questioned by detectives about a knife attack in a public toilet in Walton-on-Thames in Surrey yesterday afternoon.The victim was stabbed at 3pm yesterday in toilets near Walton Bridge that police said are "a popular meeting place for men."

  • Spanish judge suspended over lesbian ruling

    Spain is credited with having some of Europe's most liberal gay rights legislation.

    4:45 PM — A judge in Spain who ordered a mother to choose between her partner and her daughters, because "a homosexual environment threatened their education," has been suspended.The body which supervises the judiciary in that country, the General Council for Judicial Power, has suspended Fernando Ferrín Calamita and a complaint about his behaviour is under investigation.The woman, from Murcia, south east Spain, was faced with the impossible choice after her husband discovered her in a compromising position with another woman.

  • Focus on next US President’s gay appointments

    “Our goal is to make sure all Americans have an equal voice in their government,“ said Chuck Wolfe, president and CEO of GLLI.

    2:30 PM — Some of America's biggest gay, lesbian, bisexual and trans rights groups have come together to launch the Presidential Appointments Project.Human Rights Campaign, the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force and Stonewall Democrats are all part of the project.It is designed to help grow the pool of openly LGBT professionals who would be qualified and ready to accept politically appointed positions in the next US Presidential administration.

  • School murder of gay teen spurs new legislation 24

    Lawrence King, who self-identified as gay, was shot in the head by McInerney during a class last Tuesday.

    1:50 PM — The fatal shooting of a 15-year-old gay student in Oxnard, California has spurred the introduction of a new diversity education bill by state Assemblyman Mike Eng.Lawrence King was killed on February 12th by classmate Brandon McInerney, 14, at E.O. Green Junior High School.Mr Eng said he hopes the new bill will establish school diversity and sensitivity training to help prevent such tragedies in the future.

  • Slovenia to host conference on gay families

    The conference is being held in Slovenia as they currently hold the EU presidency.

    1:35 PM — Lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans activists, decision makers and experts will attend a conference in Slovenia next month which aims to draw attention to the to the lack of recognition and existing discrimination LGBT families face in Europe.At present only three of the 27 EU member states legally recognise same-sex marriage, six allow equivalent civil registration schemes and a further seven have schemes which provide considerably less rights and protections than marriage.The conference is being held in Slovenia as they currently hold the EU presidency.

  • Gay man murdered at Surrey cruising spot 9

    Any witnesses or anyone with information should call Surrey Police on 0845 125 2222, or speak anonymously to Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

    1:15 PM — Police have launched a murder investigation after a man in his 50s was stabbed at a public toilet in Walton-on-Thames in Surrey.The victim was discovered near Walton Bridge at 3pm yesterday. He was taken by air ambulance to St Peter's Hospital in Chertsey where he died at 5.30pm.A police spokesperson said the victim was gay and described the toilets where he was attacked as "a popular meeting place for men."

  • Obama continues his winning streak in Wisconsin

    At stake are 74 delegates from Wisconsin to the national convention in August.

    8:03 AM — Barack Obama, the 46-year-old African-American running to win the Democratic party nomination for President of the United States, is expected to win two more state competitions held yesterday.He took Wisconsin, his ninth win in a row over his only rival, former First Lady Hillary Clinton.Polling data indicates she is losing support among key groups such as white men and women and lower income voters.

  • Paddick welcomes poll result 11

    Despite topping the PinkNews.co.uk poll, others show Mr Paddick trailing the Tory and Labour candidates.

    7:30 AM — The Liberal Democrat candidate for Mayor of London has welcomed a PinkNews.co.uk poll that showed he has strong support in the gay community.Brian Paddick, a former Metropolitan police Deputy Assistant Commissioner, won less first preference votes than incumbent Mayor and Labour's candidate Ken Livingstone in the poll but took more second preference votes.

  • Moscow gays want one million euros compensation for Pride ban

    Activists plan to try to stage another gay Pride march on May 27th this year.

    7:10 AM — The ban placed on the organisation of a gay Pride march in Moscow in 2007 was a breach of human rights, the organisers have said in a letter to the European Court of Human Rights.They are asking the court to rule on the ban and want one million euros compensation.The legal action against the Russian authorities is the second brought by Moscow Pride organisers, who are also asking for a ruling on the 2006 Pride march ban.

  • DUP minister calls gay rugby “apartheid” 7

    As a councillor in Lisburn, County Antrim, he tried to ban gay and lesbian couples from holding civil partnerships in the town hall.

    6:35 AM — The Northern Ireland minister for arts and culture has attacked the formation of a gay rugby team in the province.Edwin Poots said he "cannot fathom why people see the necessity to develop an apartheid in sport."The minister is a member of the Democratic Unionist Party, an organisation notorious for its homophobia.As a councillor in Lisburn, County Antrim, he tried to ban gay and lesbian couples from holding civil partnerships in the town hall.

  • 19th February 2008

    Paisley Snr implicated in corruption allegations 5

    Ian Paisley Snr, 81, has been drawn into the controversy surrounding his son and namesake's lobbying on behalf of a property developer.

    4:20 PM — The First Minister of Northern Ireland is facing questions about his future following the resignation of his son as a junior minister in the province's Executive.Ian Paisley Snr, 81, has been drawn into the controversy surrounding his son and namesake's lobbying on behalf of a property developer.In May 2007 his son caused outrage with homophobic comments he made in a magazine interview.

  • Brian Paddick tops PinkNews.co.uk poll 11

    Lib Dem candidate Brian Paddick emerged as the victor in our poll.

    3:20 PM — The Liberal Democrat candidate for Mayor of London has come top of a poll of PinkNews.co.uk's London readers.Incumbent Labour Mayor Ken Livingstone won the most first preference votes, but was overtaken by Brian Paddick when valid second preference votes were counted.The Mayor of London is elected by the Supplementary Vote (SV) system, and PinkNews.co.uk used the same system to calculate which candidate won the poll.

  • Gay Iranian teen faces deportation 23

    It is feared that if Mehdi is ordered to be deported back to Iran he may face execution for being gay.

    2:30 PM — A gay teenager from Iran who fled the UK for the Netherlands last year after his appeal for asylum was refused by the Home Office has been arrested by Dutch authorities.He is reported to be due to be returned to the UK next week, where he may face deportation back to Iran.19-year-old Mehdi Kazemi is currently being held by police in Rotterdam pending his return to the UK.

  • Castro’s departure brings hope for gay Cubans 1

    Sexual diversity was seen by Fidel Castro as a corrupt consequence of capitalism.

    2:30 PM — Fidel Castro today announced his resignation as the political and military leader of Cuba, 49 years after he seized power and installed a Communist regime in the Caribbean island nation.The 81-year-old's poor health in recent years has sparked a renewed national debate about the rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans Cubans.Sexual diversity was seen by Fidel Castro as a corrupt consequence of capitalism.

  • Victim of homophobic thug still haunted by attack 2

    On Friday, Lockwood he was jailed for ten years for the “murderous“ attack.

    2:00 PM — A gay man whose home was torched by a prolific young thug as he and his partner slept inside has said he is still haunted by the attack.Nick Hughes battled the fire which started when Sonny Lockwood poured petrol through the letter box his home in New Addington, Croydon before igniting it with a parachute flare.While he fought the flames naked, he ordered his partner Peter Cameron to remain in their bedroom with the door closed, thinking he would have a better chance of survival.

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