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Current Affairs

  • 28th June 2007

    Outed Russian MP considers legal options 2

    The MP gave no details of his complaint to the prosecution authorities.

    6:00 PM — Russian State Duma Deputy Alexander Chuev has told journalists he sent his complaint to the prosecution authorities in connection with the statements made by Moscow Pride organiser Nicolas Alexeyev about his homosexuality.Speaking on the talk show K baryeru last week Mr Alexeyev, who was convicted of a minor offence last month for his role in the banned Pride march, outed Mr Chuev.The MP is one of the most outspoken opponents of gay rights.

  • Ministry of Defence says sorry for expelling gays

    In 2000, the government removed the ban on gay, lesbian and bisexual people serving openly in the Armed Forces.

    5:34 PM — A military officer responsible for equality training has now issued an apology to the thousands of gay men and lesbians who were discharged from the British Armed forces because of their sexuality.Wing Commander Phil Sagar runs the armed forces joint equality and diversity training centre. He told BBC Radio 4: "Of course we're sorry for anyone who's suffered personal trauma."In 2000, the government removed the ban on gay, lesbian and bisexual people serving openly in the Armed Forces.

  • Trade unions hold gay conference

    London over the next two days to debate a series of key equality issues at the annual TUC Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender conference..

    5:30 PM — Several hundred lesbian and gay workers are gathering in central London over the next two days to debate a series of key equality issues at the annual TUC Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender conference.Delegates attending the event at Congress House will hear speeches from TUC General Secretary Brendan Barber, Commission for Equality and Human Rights Chair Trevor Phillips and MP Angela Eagle.

  • Gay rights champion appointed Leader of the Lords 4

    Baroness Ashton with former PinkNews.co.uk editor Marc Shoffman at the Stonewall Awards 2006

    4:05 PM — Baroness Ashton of Upholland, winner of the coveted Stonewall award for Politician of the Year, has been promoted to the Cabinet by new Prime Minister Gordon Brown.Previously known as Catherine Ashton, she was made a life peer by Tony Blair in 1999, as Baroness Ashton of Upholland, of St Albans.She was one of the ministers who shepherded the Sexual Orientation Regulations onto the statue book.

  • Analysis: Brown’s new Cabinet ministers 4

    Only one Cabinet minister, Defence Secretary Des Browne, stays in the same job.

    3:44 PM — Prime Minister Gordon Brown has appointed several new faces to the Cabinet today as he forms his first administration.Only one Cabinet minister, Defence Secretary Des Browne, stays in the same job.While there may be some gay men and lesbians appointed in the more junior posts, there are no openly gay people at the top of government.

  • Blair questioned again by police over peerages

    A spokesman at Scotland Yard told the BBC that the Metropolitan Police was “not prepared to discuss“ the inquiry.

    2:48 PM — As it was announced that the by election to replace Tony Blair as an MP will be held on the 19th or 26th July, it emerged that Scotland Yard detectives questioned him for a third time before he left office as part of the investigation into 'cash for honours.'In one of her last actions as Chief Whip, Jacqui Smith moved writs in the House of Commons to start the by election process.Mr Brown appointed Ms Smith as Home Secretary today, the first woman to hold the office.

  • Blears appointment welcomed by gay organisation 4

    She has an excellent record on gay rights.

    1:50 PM — Stonewall has welcomed Hazel Blears to her new role as Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government.She has an excellent record on gay rights, voting for the equalisation of the age of consent, for the rights of gay couples to adopt, for civil partnerships and against Section 28.By contrast, Ruth Kelly absented herself from every vote on gay rights until she was appointed as Communities Secretary.

  • New PM makes radical changes to the Cabinet 4

    Labour's newly elected Deputy Leader, Harriet Harman, has been appointed Leader of the House of Commons.

    12:30 PM — Details of wide-ranging reshuffle are slowly emerging from Downing St, with new Prime Minister Gordon Brown signalling his determination to break with the Blair years.David Miliband becomes Foreign Secretary at the age of 41.A poll of PinkNews.co.uk readers in May found 27% wanted Mr Miliband as next Prime Minister and 13% wanted Gordon Brown. His elevation to one of the top jobs in the government allows Mr Miliband to continue his work on climate change.

  • Hazel Blears appointed Minister for Equality 4

    During her campaign for Deputy Leader of the Labour Party she accused the Conservative Party of being “riddled with homophobia.“

    12:01 PM — The former Labour Party chair and unsuccessful candidate for the deputy leadership, Hazel Blears, has been appointed Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government.Ms Blears will have responsibility for equality issues in her new job, including gay rights and the new Commission for Equality and Human Rights.During her campaign for Deputy Leader of the Labour Party she accused the Conservative Party of being "riddled with homophobia."

  • Ruth Kelly moved from gay rights role 4

    Ms Kelly is the new Secretary of State for Transport.

    11:50 AM — Controversial Cabinet minister Ruth Kelly has been retained by new Prime Minister Gordon Brown, but placed far away from any controversy over her religious views.Ms Kelly is the new Secretary of State for Transport.In her previous role at Communities and Local Government she was heavily criticised for delaying the implementation of the Sexual Orientation Regulations.

  • Gang targeting gay men in Brighton

    The gang hurled homophobic abuse, before physically attacking their victim and robbing him.

    11:47 AM — Police in Brighton, a city often referred to as the gay capital of England, have issued a warning after two vicious homophobic attacks left their victims seriously injured.The attacks, which both occurred around the Preston Park area, are thought to be the work of one gang described as four Afro-Carribean men in a red saloon.In the first incident, a 39 and 36 year-old male couple were walking along Hamilton Road, near the park.

  • Gordon Brown appoints gay adviser to key role

    Mr Livermore was appointed as a Special Adviser to Chancellor Brown in May 2005.

    11:30 AM — Spencer Livermore has been appointed director of political strategy at No 10. The 32-year-old has unrivalled access to the new Prime Minister and will play a key role in shaping the direction of the Brown government.Mr Livermore was ranked seven in this year's Independent Pink List, making him the most powerful gay person in UK politics.He read economics and politics at the London School of Economics before joining the Labour Party economic research unit in 1997.

  • Presidential candidate visits with the gays

    On Tuesday the former Senator from North Carolina visited the Gay and Lesbian Centre in Los Angeles.

    10:59 AM — While his wife Elizabeth kicked off San Francisco's Pride and supports gay marriage, presidential candidate John Edwards has been more careful about his support to the LGB community.He claims that he wants to end discrimination of gay and lesbian couples, but he is not in favour of gay marriage.Despite the fact that he has not fully endorsed LGBT demands of equal rights, a group of 25 prominent community leaders supports his candidature.

  • Comment: Changing attitudes to gays

    For the first time, a majority of respondents believe that homosexuals cannot change their sexual orientation even if they wanted to.

    10:45 AM — CNN has issued a number of opinion polls in the past. Their questionnaires touch on topics like the presidential candidates, terrorism and climate change. Homosexuality is another topic they have issued surveys on in the past years.The results of this year's CNN opinion polls on Homosexuality and Gay Rights were published today. And what seems to promise a 'rosy future' for US-American attitude towards gays and lesbians, has to be considered with caution.

  • 27th June 2007

    Tony Blair resigns as an MP to become peace envoy

    Tony Blair will resign as an MP

    5:35 PM — Tony Blair has resigned as the MP for Sedgefield just hours after resigning as Prime Minister.He was confirmed at 5pm as the new envoy for the Quartet (EU, USA, UN and Russia) on resolving the Israel-Palestine conflict.Mr Blair, who has introduced a wide range of gay rights in his ten years in power, was not expected to remain in the House of Commons.

  • Strong support for gay partnerships among Czechs

    The Czech Republic was the first post-communist to embed homosexual partnership.

    4:39 PM — Nearly 70% of adults in the Czech Republic believe that registered partnership should be available to gays and lesbians according to a CVVM poll conducted last month.This figure is up from 62% two years ago.The news comes almost a year after registered partnership, endowing inheritance, maintenance and hospital rights to same-sex partners, was made legal.

  • Gay rights demo in Moscow blocked by police

    The protestors wanted the EU to ban the Moscow Mayor, Yuri Luzhkov, from travelling in Europe. photo: rich moffitt@flickr.com

    4:10 PM — More than 20 people who wanted to protest outside the EU's offices in Moscow have been stopped by police, despite the fact that the demonstration had been sanctioned.Officers said that they decided the protest would interfere with nearby building work."Authorities in Moscow have broken the law again by not allowing our picket," said activist Alexey Davydov told AP.

  • New Prime Minister’s first speech in full

    Gordon Brown addressed reporters outside No 10 Downing St this afternoon in his first speech as Prime Minister.

    3:38 PM — Gordon Brown addressed reporters outside No 10 Downing St this afternoon in his first speech as Prime Minister:"I have just accepted the invitation of Her Majesty the Queen to form a government."This will be a new government with new priorities and I have been privileged to have been granted the great opportunity to serve my country."

  • Gordon Brown takes office as Prime Minister

    Mr Brown pledged to reach across party divides to work in the national interest.

    3:05 PM — The Queen has asked Gordon Brown to form a government. The new Prime Minister spent nearly an hour with Her Majesty at Buckingham Palace this afternoon.Arriving at Downing St just before 3pm he told journalists: "this will be a new Government with new priorities."Mr Brown appeared with his wife Sarah outside No 10 Downing St, but unlike his predecessor his children were not present.

  • Test case on gender reassignment for prisoner

    Despite previous legal challenges however, no inmate has yet to receive a full sex-change.

    2:41 PM — A test case to determine whether a convicted criminal in Boston should be granted a $20,000 (£10,000) sex-change operation at prison expense is still on-going after a year, despite costing $52,000 in expert witness fees alone.The crux of the case rests on whether Michelle Kosilek, formerly Robert Kosilek, needs the surgery as a matter of medical necessity.Kosilek, 58, was convicted of murdering his wife in 1990, claiming it was in self-defence after she split burning tea on his genitals.

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