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Politics

  • 5th March 2007

    Spain grants new identity rights to transsexuals

    The legislation follows the approval of same-sex marriages by the Socialist government in 2005.

    5:44 PM — The Spanish government has passed legislation allowing transsexuals to officially change their name and gender without needing to undergo gender reassignment surgery first.Despite opposition from the conservative Popular Party, the law progressed through the country's lower legislative chamber last week.The new legislation asks transsexuals to obtain and present an official medical diagnosis outlining a clinically proven case of gender dysfunction.

  • War hero comes out then speaks out

    Sgt. Alva's intervention comes at a time when Americans are revisiting the policy of banning openly gay people from the military. photo: human rights campaign

    1:16 PM — The first American soldier to be wounded in the current Iraq conflict gained a sensational amount of publicity, including a visit from the President and Mrs Bush.Now Marine Staff Sgt. Eric Alva is in the news again.He has come out as a gay man, and urged Congress to change military policy towards gay personnel.

  • San Francisco Mayor vilified for “porn day”

    Newsom honoured the 40th anniversary of Colt studios by designating last Friday as “Colt Studio Day.“

    12:57 PM — The Mayor of San Francisco, Gavin Newsom, has been mocked after commemorating a studio that produces gay pornography.Newsom honoured the 40th anniversary of Colt studios by designating last Friday as "Colt Studio Day."The 39-year-old mayor gained international attention in 2004 when he instructed city officials to issue same-sex marriage licenses.

  • Commentator causes a commotion with the F word 2

    Republican candidates for President lined up to condemn Ms Coulter for lowering the tone of political debate. photo: www.anncoulter.com

    11:02 AM — Right-wing polemicist Ann Coulter, who once called Arabs towel heads, has outraged American political class by calling a Presidential candidate a faggot.Speaking at the influential Conservative Political Action Conference in Washington on Friday, the publicity-seeking Ms Coulter said:"I was going to have a few comments on the other Democratic presidential candidate John Edwards. But it turns out that you have to go into rehab if you use the word 'faggot.'"

  • Ruth Kelly adviser resigns over gay rights

    Ms Kelly has been a controversial choice as minister for equality.

    10:33 AM — A senior aide to the Communities Secretary quit her job after clashes over the new Sexual Orientation Regulations, it has been reported.Rachel O'Brien left her £50,000 a year post last week. The Mail on Sunday reports that she fell out with Ruth Kelly over gay rights.The paper also reported that Ms Kelly refused to attend last year's Euro Pride march in London.

  • 2nd March 2007

    Bucks Fizz Tory says sorry for gay comments 29

    Mr Van Day denied that he had come under pressure from the Conservative party to apologise.

    11:53 AM — A Tory candidate whose comments about a gay men's choir offended some voters has apologised.David Van Day, a former member of Eurovision-winning group Bucks Fizz, is standing as a Conservative candidate for the East Brighton ward.At a Valentine's Day charity fundraising dinner in Brighton Pavilion, Mr Van Day gave a speech after a performance by The Brighton and Hove Actually Gay Men's Chorus.

  • Mayor’s office refuse to apologise to Tatchell 4

    Last year Mr Livingstone was suspended from office for a month after comparing a Jewish journalist to a concentration camp guard.

    10:03 AM — The office of the Mayor of London has stood by comments by Mr Livingstone that gay rights activist Peter Tatchell was waging an Islamophobic campaign in relation to gay rights in Russia.Yesterday Mr Tatchell demanded that the Mayor prove his assertion or apologise.City Hall has responded with a detailed analysis of the statements of OutRage! and Mr Tatchell.

  • 1st March 2007

    Comment: The politics of religion and gay adoption

    The main Jewish adoption agency, Norwood, on the other hand, said that it was happy to consider gay couples as parents.

    3:00 PM — By Ben Cohen The debate over exemption for religious groups from the Equality Act exposed a division within the government and the country.While we don't know exactly what happened behind closed doors, it appears that Ruth Kelly, the Communities Secretary and Minister for Women and Equality, was persuaded by her friends within the Catholic Church to exempt their adoption agencies from being forced to treat gay and lesbian couples in the same way that they would a straight couple.

  • MPs and peers say regulations should cover schools 1

    The regulations will need an affirmative vote in committee and then on the floor of both Houses.

    12:31 PM — The parliamentary Joint Committee on Human Rights has produced a report on the Sexual Orientation Regulations that says there can be no exemptions for church-run agencies.The committee, which is made up of peers and MPs, also said that the regulations should be extended to cover schools, even ones run by religious groups.The committee praised the SORs as a significant human rights enhancing measure.

  • Tatchell demands an apology from Livingstone 4

    Mr Tatchell pointed out that he has supported Mr Livingstone for over 30 years.

    12:07 PM — PinkNews.co.uk exclusive Gay rights activist Peter Tatchell says that the Mayor of London's assertion that he conducted an Islamophobic campaign is nonsense - and he wants him to apologise.In a press statement released earlier today, Ken Livingstone accused Mr Tatchell of focusing on the homophobia of the grand Mufti, a Russian Islamic cleric.

  • 28th February 2007

    Ken’s a hypocrite, says Moscow pride organiser 1

    After the press conference, he attempted to unfurl his Moscow Pride flag.

    6:27 PM — PinkNews.co.uk exclusive Nicolas Alexeyev has blasted the Mayor of London, calling him a hypocrite over his behaviour at the press conference for the meeting of four European mayors in the city this afternoon.Mr Alexeyev, who is an acreditted journalist, claims that Ken Livingstone ignored his repeated attempts to ask a question of Moscow Mayor Yuri Luzhkov.He also says that after the conference he was pushed and threatened by Mr Luzhkov's press officer.

  • Bucks Fizz Tory’s off-colour comments upset gay voters 29

    Last December Tory councillor Peter Willows was found guilty of public order offences after he likened gay people to paedophiles at a civic reception in the city.

    6:27 PM — PinkNews.co.uk exclusive A former Bucks Fizz star turned Brighton politician is facing calls to step down as a Tory candidate for the city council after allegedly making homophobic comments.Gay campaigners want David Van Day to withdraw from standing in the East Brighton ward after comments he made at a Valentine's charity fundraising dinner hosted by the Conservative Mayor of Brighton and Hove upset some of those in attendance.

  • Congress may revisit gays in the military

    Belkin noted that repealing the gay ban is not just the priority of a liberal or Democratic agenda, but is now supported by majorities of Republicans, conservatives and regular church-goers.

    4:27 PM — In the wake of announcements that Congressman Marty Meehan will re-introduce legislation to repeal "don't ask, don't tell" this week, observers are debating the future of the gays-in-the-military issue in Congress.Last year, Representative Meehan, a Democrat from Massachusetts, garnered the support of 122 representatives for the Military Readiness Enhancement Act.

  • Harassment not covered by discrimination regulations 1

    Equality and anti-discrimination law has been built up in a patchy way and with differing levels of protection.

    3:52 PM — The Sexual Orientation Regulations for England, Wales and Scotland will not provide a protection against harassment included in the Northern Ireland regulations.The Christian Institute, who are opposed to the new rules outlawing discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation when accessing goods and services, reported the lack of a harassment regulation in their magazine.

  • Mayor Ken defends rights of Russian gays 1

    Mr Livingstone condemned his attitude at a press conference this afternoon.

    2:11 PM — The Mayor of London has condemned any ban on gay rights marches, and said the matter will be raised with the Mayor of Moscow.The mayors of the four largest cities in Europe are meeting in London today, with the openly gay Mayors of Paris and Berlin also joining Mr Livingstone.The London Mayor said the matter of "municipal policies to combat discrimination" is on the agenda.

  • Clarke and Milburn deny “stop Gordon” campaign 1

    Many Blairites are anxious about Mr Brown succeeding as Prime Minister.

    12:13 PM — Two former senior members of the Blair government have denied that they are trying to undermine Chancellor Gordon Brown's chances of becoming Prime Minister.However, both Charles Clarke and Alan Milburn refused to say they would not stand against Mr Brown.The pair have been accused of troublemaking after they jointly launched a website, The 2020 Vision.

  • Lithuanian MPs think homosexuality a perversion 4

    Homosexual sex was legalised in Lithuania in 1993.

    11:11 AM — A poll of members of the Lithuanian parliament has revealed that over half of them agree that homosexuality is a perversion.The survey reflected a deeply ingrained homophobia in Lithuanian society. Homosexual sex was legalised in Lithuania in 1993.In 2004 the age of consent for homosexual sex was lowered from 18 to 14 to bring it in line with the age of consent for heterosexual sex.

  • 27th February 2007

    Williams revelation about sexual orientation regulations 57

    Dr Williams also revealed that the Church of England have received assurances from the government. photo: lambeth palace

    2:16 PM — A written answer from the Archbishop of Canterbury at the Church of England's General Synod has revealed that new laws to protect LGB people from discrimination may be under threat.Dr Rowan Williams said that the Sexual Orientation Regulations for Great Britain will differ from those already in force in Northern Ireland.Dr Williams' answer implies that there will be more exemptions for faith-based service providers.

  • Analysis: Irish government accused over gay unions defeat 3

    Members of the public in Ireland were overwhelming disappointed that the Bill  did not pass.

    11:53 AM — Legislation proposed by the Irish Labour Party designed to recognise, amongst other things gay marriages, failed in country's Parliament due to a lack of Government support.Celine Casey, a former Parliamentary researcher at the Dáil Éireann, explores the background to the defeat and the future for gay rights laws in Ireland. 

  • 26th February 2007

    Homophobic mayor faces lawsuit and London protest

    In addition to demanding a retraction, parade organisers are also seeking 1,000 roubles (£19) each in compensation for moral damage.

    6:21 PM — The organisers of Moscow's gay pride parade are suing Yuri Luzhkov, the mayor that banned the event last year, for likening the parade to a "satanic act."Organisers of the parade, led by Nicholas Alexeyev, are calling on Luzhkov to retract his comments, DPA news has reported."Both in the secular and religious context, the term 'satanic' is offensive and carries a negative colouring," Alexeyev said.

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