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Current Affairs

  • 9th July 2007

    Senate approves judge who attended gay ‘wedding’

    The Senate Judiciary Committee had approved Judge Neff for a seat on the US District Court in Michigan's Western District in October 2006.

    5:23 PM — An attempt by a conservative Republican to block the appointment of a federal judge because she had attended a same-sex commitment ceremony was defeated in the US Senate yesterday.Senator Sam Brownback of Kansas is one of the less prominent politicians vying for the Republican party's nomination for President.Last year he blocked the nomination of Michigan Court of Appeals Judge Janet Neff to the federal court.

  • Synod fails to heal Anglican divisions on gay issues

    The synod held that the issue of homosexuality, and the ordination of gay clergy in particular, exposed the 'deep flaws in how Anglican unity is maintained.'“

    4:03 PM — This weekend's General Synod in York resolved to create a disciplinary covenant that might see some gay-friendly clergy and bishops thrown out of the Anglican church.There is no resolution in sight as the Church of England continues to equivocate on the issue of the ordination of gay clergy.The rows over the blessing of same-sex relationships and the ordination of gay clergy threatens to split the worldwide Church.

  • Blair to recommend Peter Mandelson for House of Lords

    Mr Mandelson has had a colourful political career. One of the architects of New Labour, he became arguably Tony Blair's closest adviser.

    3:11 PM — Former Prime Minister Tony Blair is to recommend his close political ally Peter Mandelson for a peerage.Traditionally a departing PM draws up a resignation honours list, though for the first time the names put forward for the House of Lords will be scrutinised by the appointments commission.It is thought Mr Blair will only nominate a few people to the Lords because of the ongoing 'cash for peerages' criminal investigation.

  • Gay divorce becomes a reality in South Africa

    Mr Van Zyl and Mr Liedenberg married in Johannesburg on February 16th.

    2:03 PM — A South African gay couple divorced last week in the Praetoria High Court following just five months of marriage.IT support consultant Ignatius Kloppers van Zyl, 47, set in motion divorce proceedings against Jacques Liebenberg, 36.They were one of many homosexual couples who took advantage of legislation passed by the South African National Council in December 2006 permitting same-sex marriage.

  • Married woman pleads guilty to civil partnership charges 2

    Ms Mitchell, a mother of three children, denied the charges at an earlier magistrates hearing in March.

    1:32 PM — A married woman admitted to a court this morning that she made a false statement to a registrar, after she illegally entered into a civil partnership.Suzanne Mitchell appeared at Shrewsbury Crown Court before Judge Robin Onions, who chastised her for giving a press interview about her story.The 29-year-old lives in Wingfield Gardens in Shrewsbury. Ms Mitchell, a mother of three children, denied the charges at an earlier magistrates hearing in March.

  • Feature: The long road to decriminalisation 1

    Leo Abse, in an interview in The Observer, said the supporters of the bill had to use all their political acumen to drag it through parliament.

    12:07 PM — 40 years ago this month, a campaiging Welsh Labour MP by the name of Leo Abse managed to guide a Bill through both Houses of Parliament.By a combination of smart tactics and appealing to politicians to pity those 'less fortunate' than themselves, he got them to agree to a partial decriminalisation of male homosexual relations.It brought an end to hundreds of years of legal persecution, as Alex Bryce explains. 

  • Pride march attacked in Croatia

    Homosexuality was legalised in Croatia in 1977, and the age of consent was equalised in 1998.

    11:10 AM — Ten people were injured when violence broke out at a gay Pride march in Zagreb on Saturday.Police arrested eight people, some of whom were reported to be armed with petrol bombs. A gang of around 20 young men taunted and abused the Pride participants.Despite the Croatian government granting limited partnership rights for gay and lesbian couples, homophobia remains rife in the country, which is overwhelmingly Roman Catholic.

  • Law student challenges gay marriage exam question 1

    Mr Dunne scored a 268.866 on the bar exam, just missing a passing grade of 270.

    10:42 AM — A man who flunked Massachusetts' bar exam is claiming in federal court that he failed the test because he refused to answer a question related to gay marriage.According to the Associated Press, a question came up concerning the rights of two married lesbians, their children and their property.Stephen Dunne says the question itself was "morally repugnant," because it legitimises same-sex marriage and parenting, which he opposes.

  • Hungary’s first gay minister comes out at film festival 1

    Mr Szetey has been working as a state secretary at the Prime Minister's Office since last July.

    10:31 AM — Hungarian Socialist Gábor Szetey became the first elected political official in Hungary to publicly come out as being gay when he opened the 12th Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgendered Film and Cultural Festival in Budapest last week.According to DPA, Mr Szetey's announcement came on the same day as junior coalition member the Alliance of Free Democrats (SZDSZ) announced that it would ask for same-sex unions to be legalised.

  • 8th July 2007

    David Cameron defends his appointment of anti-gay campaigner 21

    Mrs Warsi conducted a homophobic campaign in a failed attempt to become elected in the constituency of Dewsbury

    3:01 PM — Conservative Leader, David Cameron today defended the appointment to his Shadow Cabinet of a Muslim who previous campaigned against gay rights.As she failed in her attempts to be democratically electesd to the House of Commons, Sayeeda Warsi, will be ennobled as a "working peer" to become David Cameron's Shadow Minister for Community Cohesion. On the 6th July, PinkNews.co.uk reported that Mrs Warsi conducted a homophobic campaign in a failed attempt to become elected in the constituency of Dewsbury.

  • 6th July 2007

    Comment: Ex-gay journalist answers his critics 24

    “Coming out from under this packaged lie requires strong self-confidence and will and desire to know the Truth. “

    4:32 PM — Earlier this week PinkNews.co.uk reported on Michael Glatze, an award-winning gay journalist and activist who announced he is now an ex-gay.The founder of Young Gay America magazine and recipient of the National Role Model Award from leading gay rights organisation Equality Forum has contacted PinkNews.co.uk to put his side of the story. Here we reproduce his thoughts on the true nature of homosexuality.

  • Presidential hopeful caught in porn row

    Mr Romney emphasised that his main fear is young children innocently coming across pornography on television and the internet.

    4:17 PM — Republican Presidential candidate Mitt Romney is being questioned by social conservatives over on-demand pornography in Marriott hotel chain rooms.Mr Romney, a Marriott board member from 1992 to 2001, has publicly voiced his opinions on the perils of pornography.Now conservative activists have attacked the candidate and the Marriott for presenting themselves as family-orientated when pornography continues to be distributed in their hotels.

  • Pub owner pleads not guilty plea over ‘gay’ sign

    The landlord, Mr Adrian Taylor, 54, is due to appear in court again in September.

    1:11 PM — The landlord of a Wiltshire pub who allegedly placed a homophobic sign outside his premises has pleaded not guilty to a public order offence at Chippenham Magistrates Court.The pub's former landlords John Williams, and his 26-year-old partner Lee, believe the sign, which read 'faggots and mince not on the menu', refers to them.Gay equality group Stonewall said the sign could breach new equality laws which came into force on April 30.

  • Gay libel suit thrown out in Malaysian court

    Disputes over policy in office during the Asian financial downturn led to the breakdown of Ibrahim and bin Mohamad's relationship.

    12:57 PM — Former Malaysian Finance Minister Anwar Ibrahim missed his chance to bring corrupt former Prime Minister Mahathir bin Mohamad to court for calling him a homosexual.An accusation that landed Ibrahim in prison for six years.Ibrahim's case was thrown out of the High Court after a judge ruled that the lawsuit was "unsustainable," due to a similar lawsuit against bin Mohamad in 1999.

  • Sacked gay Lutheran pastor refuses to budge

    Reverend Schmeling says he won't leave the pulpit of St. John's Lutheran Church.

    12:35 PM — The Evangelical Lutheran Church of America removed Atlanta Pastor Bradley Schmeling from the church's pastoral roles on Thursday because he is an out gay man.But according to the Associated Press, the Reverend Schmeling says he won't leave the pulpit of St. John's Lutheran Church.This decision that could open the 350-member congregation to disciplinary action from the Evangelical Lutheran Church.

  • Trans prisoner settles landmark civil rights lawsuit

    The resulting policy changes will formalise policies regarding provision of hormones to transgender inmates and training for medical and corrections staff.

    12:30 PM — John Doe, a 2005 inmate of the Orange County Jail in California, today successfully settled a civil rights suit against the County resulting in significant policy changes and a settlement sum of close to $50,000 (£25,000).Doe, represented by San Diego law firm Stock Stephens, LLP and the Transgender Law Center (TLC), alleged denial of medical care and gender identity harassment in the suit.

  • New Tory shadow minister’s previous opposition to gay equality 19

    Mrs Warsi's campaign leaflet attacked the government's gay right agenda.

    12:05 PM — The much-publicised appointment of a Muslim woman to the Tory Shadow Cabinet could harm relations between the party and the gay community.Sayeeda Warsi, the new Shadow Minister for Community Cohesion, hit the headlines during the 2005 election campaign for distributing campaign leaflets with a strongly hostile attitude to gay rights.

  • Campaigning MP welcomes government bullying commitment 1

    The first Commons investigation into bullying by the Education Select Committee was instigated last year at the request of Mr Williams.

    11:31 AM — Stephen Williams MP, a Liberal Democrat who has campaigned against bullying in schools, has welcomed the commitment from the Minister of Children to stamp out the problem.The first Commons investigation into bullying by the Education Select Committee was instigated last year at the request of Mr Williams.The committee heard evidence from charity Anti-Bullying Alliance that between 30-50% of young people in secondary schools attracted to people of the same sex will have directly experienced homophobic bullying.

  • 5th July 2007

    Iraqi death squads use chat rooms to entrap gay men 3

    Muqtada al-Sadr's men have adopted a new tactic, borrowed from the Iranian secret police.

    5:32 PM — Two gay Iraqi men have survived kidnapping and beating by the violently homophobic Mahdi Army.The army is loyal to firebrand fundamentalist Shia cleric, Muqtada al-Sadr, who is fighting to establish an Islamist dictatorship in Iraq.Two months after their ordeal, traumatised Ahmed, 23, and Zaid, 24, both students in Baghdad University, have come forward to tell how they were lured into a trap by members of the Mahdi Army.

  • Boris Johnson might smash gay mayoral ambitions 7

    Mr Johnson, not gay but a firm favourite with voters of all sexualities, may be in the frame.

    4:41 PM — The race for the Conservative party nomination for Mayor of London became more interesting today with the revelation that the party's Higher Education spokesman Boris Johnson is seriously considering throwing his hat into the ring.If Mr Johnson, one of the most popular Tory MPs in the country, does decide to run it will end the ambitions of two gay prospective candidates.Earlier this week Nick Boles, an openly gay man, withdrew from the race to undergo treatment for cancer.

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