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Current Affairs

  • 24th October 2007

    Campaign to clear councillor convicted of paedophile slur 130

    The “Justice for Leyton Ward“ campaign has been launched by Ms Grell's friends, family, constituents and political colleagues.

    10:44 AM — Friends and political colleagues of a London councillor convicted of making false allegations of paedophilia against her gay opponent have set up a campaign to support her appeal.Miranda Grell was barred from public office for three years and fined £1,000 and ordered to pay £3,000 costs by Waltham Forest Magistrates Court last month.She won a formerly safe Lib Dem seat on Waltham Forest council in last May's elections.

  • Gay conference faces ban on public event

    At ILGA Europe's annual conference members will discuss the organisational priorities, strategies and tactics.

    10:23 AM — A leading LGBT rights organisation has launched a legal challenge after one of the events at its annual conference was banned by the authorities in Lithuania.ILGA Europe members are gathering for their conference in Vilnius which begins tomorrow, but their public Rainbow Flag event has been blocked by the city's mayor.ILGA Europe chose to meet in Lithuania to highlight the prejudice gay people face in the country, formerly part of the Soviet Union.

  • 23rd October 2007

    Poland will support EU rights charter 1

    Poland and the UK were the only two nations in the 27-member EU to opt out.

    6:15 PM — The next Polish government will support the European Union Charter of Fundamental Rights which was vigorously opposed by the outgoing administration.Prime Minister Jaroslaw Kaczynski had claimed that Poland was "culturally different" from their EU partners, especially when it came to the rights of LGBT people and the use of the death penalty.Civic Platform, the political party who won the most seats in Sunday's Polish general election, is committed to adopting the charter.

  • Singapore rejects decriminalisation of gay sex 3

    Sir Ian McKellen urged the country's government to ditch the colonial-era laws on gay sex while touring the country with the Royal Shakespeare Company.

    5:10 PM — Gay people have a place in Singaporean society but they cannot be part of the "mainstream way of life," a senior government minister told the country's Parliament yesterday.Ho Peng Kee, a Law and Home Affairs minister, was responding to a motion tabled by MP Siew Kum Hong calling for the repeal of laws that make gay sex a crime.Last week Mr Siew told The New Paper that the issue was larger than gay rights.

  • More Democrats sign up to repeal gay military ban

    Congressman Murphy is a former JAG Corps attorney, and served two deployments after the terrorist attacks of September 11th 2001.

    3:33 PM — Five more members of the House of Representatives have added their support to removing the ban on openly lesbian, gay and bisexual military personnel in the US Armed Forces.136 Congressmen and women are now co-sponsors of The Military Readiness Enhancement Act, which repeals the policy of "Don't Ask Don't Tell."The policy, introduced in 1994, states that LGB people can serve in the Armed Forces as long as they conceal their orientation.

  • Christian backlash against US gay legislation 3

    ENDA will be voted on by the House of Representatives this week.

    2:01 PM — Evangelical Christians in the United States have attacked proposals to protect LGBT people from employment discrimination and a new hate crimes bill.Americans for Truth About Homosexuality, which describes itself as a "national organisation devoted exclusively to exposing and countering the homosexual activist agenda," is one of several groups protesting against the Employment Non Discrimination Act, currently before Congress.

  • Senator Obama linked to “ex-gay” singer 15

    Obama belongs to the United Church of Christ, which supports gay marriage.

    11:20 AM — Senator Barack Obama has drawn criticism for signing up a gospel singer with controversial views about gays and lesbians for his campaign in South Carolina.According to AP, gay rights group Truth Wins Out has urged the Democratic Presidential candidate to his cut ties with Donnie McClurkin, one of several gospel singers scheduled to raise money for the Illinois senator at a concert in South Carolina this weekend.

  • US Senate candidate outs himself

    Democrat Jim Neal, who says he will challenge Republican Senator Elizabeth Dole for the seat, surprised many last weekend when he outed himself.

    11:02 AM — North Carolina voters will be given the opportunity to vote into office an openly gay Senator next year, should the candidate in question follow through with his current plans.Democrat Jim Neal, who says he will challenge Republican Senator Elizabeth Dole for the seat, surprised many last weekend when he outed himself during a discussion on liberal blog, BlueNC.com.At one point, another participant in the discussion asked Neal if he was gay.

  • Australian opposition won’t change gay marriage law 13

    Mr Rudd stood by his Labour party line that marriage is between a man and woman, but admitted it was not a popular view in some circles.

    11:02 AM — The Australian opposition leader, Kevin Rudd, has said he would still love his three children if they were gay, but as prime minister he would not change the law to allow gays to marry.Earlier this month, the announcement that a general election will be held in Australia on 24th November prompted evangelical groups in the country to begin campaigning against gay equality.Speaking on the Austereo network on Tuesday, Mr Rudd stood by his Labour party line that marriage is between a man and woman.

  • Interview: The Tories, gays and education 6

    Gove, who is married with two small children, has risen quickly through the ranks since becoming an MP

    12:20 AM — While many in David Cameron's Conservatives are recent converts to gay equality, including Cameron himself, there are a few who spoke out long before it was fashionable.The Shadow Secretary of State for Children, Families and Schools, Michael Gove, was urging the party to break with the past long before he took his place in the House of Commons.Elected in 2005 to represent the true-blue constituency of Surrey Heath, Gove is a clever, articulate Scot, a former Times journalist and an archetypal new Tory.

  • 22nd October 2007

    Analysis: The battle for gay marriage will be fought in the states

    The message was clear; Democrats love the gays, or at least they say they do.

    11:30 PM — If you believe some of the hype out there you might think that 4th November 2008 will be a turning point in the long campaign to achieve equal human rights for America's gay men and lesbians.The mutual love-in that was the Logo Democratic Presidential "gay" forum this summer was more reminiscent of a sofa-style chat with Oprah than a fully-fledged political battle of ideas.The message was clear; Democrats love the gays, or at least they say they do.

  • Brazilian senator uses paedophilia to condemn gay rights 1

    In Brazil homophobia is widespread and activists claim that 2,680 gay people were murdered between 1980 and 2006.

    6:53 PM — A Brazilian politician has caused outrage by comparing homosexuality to paedophilia.Senator Magno Malta made the comment during a speech opposing a proposed new law which will classify homophobia as a criminal offence.Mr Malta said that allowing homosexuals to be openly affectionate in public would be the same as legalising paedophilia.

  • Suspended Vatican priest has list of gay colleagues 5

    The Curia is the governing body of the Roman Catholic Church.

    4:50 PM — A Roman Catholic Church official suspended after he was identified in a television broadcast supposedly declaring his homosexuality and making advances to a young man has a dossier of gay clergy who work in the Vatican, according to a TV report.Monsignor Tommaso Stenico has a "list of names and circumstances implicating a certain number of priests and even bishops working at the Curia," Italian current affairs show Panorama revealed on Friday.The Curia is the governing body of the Roman Catholic Church.

  • Comment: Stop deporting gay refugees back to Iran 28

    Several failed asylum seekers have committed suicide, rather than face the barbaric persecution, torture and punishment awaiting them in Iran, having publicly admitted their sexuality to the Home Office.

    4:31 PM — Detention centres stand as monuments to Britain's attitude to human rights, incarcerating behind razor wire asylum seekers awaiting deportation.They are the last stop for those who have failed to make a successful asylum claim, a key tool in the British governments attempt to "manage migration" and hold an average 25,000 every year.Much of the debate around immigration to the UK focuses on the legitimacy of asylum claims.

  • Ex-magistrate begins gay adoption appeal 9

    Mr McClintock, a member of the Christian People's Alliance Council, wanted the tribunal to reinstate him with the understanding that he can opt out of cases that conflict with his Christian views.

    1:03 PM — The Christian former magistrate who claimed unfair dismissal after he was told he could not pick and choose which adoption cases to rule on starts his appeal today.In March 62-year-old Andrew McClintock learned that his legal action against the Lord Chancellor, claiming that his Bible-influenced opinions should allow him to be excused from approving gay adoptions, was rejected by an employment tribunal.McClintock says that evidence given in his defence by a right-wing American academic, claiming that gay parents were bad for kids, was not given due consideration by the Sheffield tribunal.

  • Irish court makes landmark ruling in trans case

    In his 70-page judgment, released on Friday, Mr Justice McKechnie criticised the government for not bring forward legislation when the case arose in 2002.

    12:45 PM — A ruling by Ireland's highest court may lead to a change in the law with regards to the rights of trans people to have a new birth certificate issued.At the High Court in Dublin Mr Justice Liam McKechnie ruled that the failure of the Irish government to provide proper recognition of the female identity of Dr Lydia Foy is a violation of the European Convention of Human Rights.He said that the system of birth registration in Ireland is incompatible with the convention.

  • A new dawn for Poland as homophobes lose power 1

    Civic Platform are a conservative party, and they plan to halve the number of MPs and introduce a flat tax.

    12:01 PM — Poland will have a new Prime Minister after Jaroslaw Kaczynski and his Law and Justice party conceded defeat to Civic Platform.The League of Polish Families, a junior partner in the former coalition government and the most outspokenly homophobic party, did not meet the 5% threshold and now have no seats in Parliament.While in government League party leader Roman Giertych was deputy Prime Minister and Education Minister.

  • Rights group challenges New York schools over gay students

    Ithaca City School District not only contested the specific facts, but argued that the human rights law does not apply to public schools.

    11:31 AM — In an effort to persuade the Ithaca City School District to abandon its stance that the New York Human Rights Law does not apply to public schools, New York-based Lambda Legal today sent school board members a letter critiquing the board's argument and explaining the potential harm the board's position could cause."The human rights law is the only effective law that expressly addresses anti-gay discrimination in New York schools," Hayley Gorenberg, deputy legal director at Lambda Legal, said in a release. "Attacking it jeopardises LGBT students."

  • 21st October 2007

    Polish government headed for defeat

    Jaroslaw Kaczynski looks set to loose his grip on power

    10:49 PM — The Polish prime minister Jaroslaw Kaczynski, tonight faces defeat following snap parliamentary elections. Exit polls indicate that the right wing, homophobic Law and Justice (PiS) party looks set to lose power following official declarations likely to be held on Tuesday.Exit polls for the TVN24 news channel indicate that the Civil Platform party (PO) won 44 per cent of the popular vote with the Law and Justice Party taking just 31 per cent.

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