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Politics

  • 23rd July 2007

    Home Secretary may consider gay hate crime law 3

    Ms Smith has impressed many MPs of all sides with her performance as Britain's first female Home Secretary.

    12:51 PM — Jacqui Smith, the Home Secretary, has told the House of Commons she may consider passing new laws creating an offence of homophobic hate crime.She was responding to a question from Labour MP Chris Bryant, who is gay. He drew attention to the murder of David Morley in October 2004.The 44-year old barman was set upon on London's South Bank, close to Parliament, by a gang of four people, one of them a teenage girl.

  • LGBT groups get UN recognition 1

    Canada and others argued that LGBT people should be heard at the UN.

    11:25 AM — The United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) has voted to accredit two gay rights organisations.Delegates came down in favour of allowing the Coalition gaie et lesbienne du Québec and the Swedish Federation for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Rights (RFSL) consultative status..22 countries voted in favour of both groups. Thirteen voted against the Quebec coalition and fourteen against the Swedish federation.

  • Out US general to speak against gay ban 5

    More than 11,000 service members have been discharged under 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell.'

    10:50 AM — Army Brigadier General Keith H. Kerr, Army Colonel Stewart Bornhoft, Navy Captain Joan E. Darrah (all retired) and five other former military officers will speak out against the US military's anti-gay 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell' policy at a programme benefiting the Servicemembers Legal Defence Network (SLDN) in Chicago next month.General Kerr was one of three senior military officers - two generals and an admiral - to "come out" in the New York Times in December 2003.

  • 20th July 2007

    Gay Tory makes Mayor of London shortlist 1

    Mr Boff announced a new policy yesterday. Londoners will have the right to draw up their own policies and have them voted on by fellow Londoners if he becomes mayor.

    5:57 PM — Andrew Boff has been selected as one of four candidates for the Conservative party nomination for Mayor of London.The 49-year-old IT consultant and publisher joins former Tory frontbencher and TV personality Boris Johnson on the list, which was chosen from over 40 hopefuls by a selection panel on Saturday.The other candidates are Kensington Chelsea councillors Warwick Lightfoot and Victoria Borwick.

  • UN votes today on accreditation for gay rights groups 1

    ECOSOC promotes international economic and social co-operation and development.

    2:45 PM — The United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) is due to vote today on whether to accredit two non-governmental organisations (NGOs) who address human rights violations based on sexual orientation and gender identity.It is thought nine countries are going to vote against accrediting the groups.ECOSOC accreditation governs whether NGOs can attend UN meetings, submit written statements, make oral interventions, host panels and get access to UN buildings.

  • 19th July 2007

    Moscow police protect gay protest against Iranian hangings 1

    More than twenty Russian activists protested outside the Iranian embassy in Moscow today. photo courtesy of www.hippy.ru

    6:20 PM — More than twenty Russian activists protested outside the Iranian embassy in Moscow today, the second anniversary of the execution of two gay teenagers in Iran.A group of nationalists and religious activists who turned up to counter-demonstrate were stopped by police and dispersed.While this was seen as a positive step after the bloody police actions at a gay Pride demonstration earlier this year, it emerged that the application for the Iran protest did not mention gay rights.

  • Gay veterans hold ‘Don’t Ask Don’t Tell’ roadshow

    President Bill Clinton had promised to open the military to openly gay and lesbian people during his successful 1992 campaign for President.

    12:45 PM — A group of former US servicemen are touring America to share their experiences of life in the military, where being openly gay is against the law.The campaign, called Legacy of Service, aims to demonstrate to Americans the hardships and unfairness of a policy, 'Don't Ask Don't Tell,' that keeps soldiers, sailors, air force and coast guard personnel in the closet.No-one knows how many gay, lesbian or bisexual servicemen and women are currently serving in the US military.

  • 18th July 2007

    MEPs to attend Pride in Estonia 1

    The Intergroup on Gay and Lesbian Rights in the European Parliament has called on the Estonian authorities to facilitate the organisation of Tallinn Pride 2007.

    12:23 PM — A year after violent homophobic attacks against Tallinn Pride, organisers have revealed that politicians from across Europe will be turning up this year to show their support.Last year LGBT marchers were attacked with sticks and stones by a group of young Estonian nationalists while celebrating the country's gay third pride event.This year's event, on August 11th, has been beset by problems with policing.

  • 17th July 2007

    Ireland to get civil partnerships 13

    Bertie Ahern was once again sworn in as Taoiseach, or Prime Minister of the Republic of Ireland, on June 14th.

    12:47 PM — The Irish Prime Minister yesterday pledged to bring in new laws to legalise civil partnerships for gay and lesbian couples.Bertie Ahern, opening a gay community centre in Dublin, said that he wanted to move as quickly as possible on the issue.He told the assembled crowd: "This Government is committed to providing a more supportive and secure legal environment for same-sex couples."

  • Exclusive: Prime Minister Gordon Brown answers your questions 19

    “I am very pleased to have this opportunity to put on record my support for civil partnerships.“

    12:15 PM — Last month we asked readers to submit questions to the Prime Minister.Well, let it not be said that Gordon Brown has had a quiet introduction to life in Downing St.Among the CORBA meetings, inspecting flood damage, trips to meet our European partners and setting out Britain's future direction, Mr Brown found time this week to address some of the questions PinkNews.co.uk readers sent in.

  • Australian government to consider new rights for gays 1

    Prime Minister John Howard said that despite a new opinion poll showing 71% of Australians favouring equal rights for gay people, he is still opposed.

    11:48 AM — The Attorney General of Australia, Philip Ruddock has told gay activists that he is working on proposals to bring before the country's Cabinet a response to a Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission report into discrimination against gay people.Rodney Croome, of the Australian Coalition for Equality, was confident that the matter would be considered before the federal elections later this year.The new Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission (HREOC) report was presented to the federal parliament in June.

  • 16th July 2007

    Row over White House security clearance for gays

    White House spokesperson Scott McClellan has denied that the move implies any express change in policy, insisting that the new rules are similar to the old ones.

    5:18 PM — The White House has altered the phraseology of a policy which describes the grounds for granting security clearances to gays and lesbians.'Security clearance' is a formal check required in the US for handling confidential data or documents.It is often requested by US employers as a compulsory verification for employees.

  • Gay candidate welcomes Boris to Mayoral race 7

    Mr Boff, who is gay, was one of the first Tories to put himself forward for the job of taking on Ken Livingstone.

    4:44 PM — PinkNews.co.uk exclusive Andrew Boff, a candidate for the Conservative candidate Mayor of London, has welcomed MP Boris Johnson to the contest.Nominations closed at noon today. Mr Boff, who is gay, was one of the first Tories to put himself forward for the job of taking on Ken Livingstone.The 49-year-old is former leader of Hillingdon council but failed to be elected Mayor of Hackney. He is up against a range of candidates.

  • Disinformation campaign against Matthew Shepard law

    “The Matthew Shepard Act sends a strong message to America, that hate and the violent crimes committed in its wake are not acceptable in our society, commented Judy Shepard.

    11:30 AM — With a US Senate vote on the Matthew Shepard Local Law Enforcement Hate Crimes Prevention Act expected soon, the Gay Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) has urged journalists to scrutinise the myths and misleading claims being made by those seeking to block the proposed law.GLAAD also want to highlight the impact of hate-motivated violence against lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) Americans. In May, the bill passed in the House of Representatives on a historic 237-180 bipartisan vote.

  • Presidential candidate’s wife meets with gays

    Mrs Edwards announced that her husband would help repeal more than a thousand laws that discriminate against same-sex couples.

    11:10 AM — Elizabeth Edwards slammed President Bush for not being tougher on crimes against gays and lesbians during a speech on Saturday for the Human Rights Campaign in San Francisco.During her address to the gay rights group, the Associated Press reports that Edwards cited the story of 26-year-old Satendar Singh.He died recently after being beaten to death at Sacramento's Lake Natomas by men hurling explicit gay slurs. She said the killing demanded renewed condemnations of hate speech.

  • 15th July 2007

    Brian Paddick may be Lib Dem candidate for Mayor 1

    Any tips? Ken Livingstone and Brian Paddick have a quiet word at the launch of EuroPride 2006

    3:43 PM — Fresh rumours appearing to be emanating from spin doctors at the Liberal Democrats imply that Brian Paddick, until his retirement, the most senior openly gay British police officer, may stand as a candidate for Mayor of London.PinkNews.co.uk first reported the suggestions last May when the then Metropolitan Police Deputy Assistant Commissioner, casually mentioned the possibility of standing for the post at the launch of the Way We Are Now, a collection of essays from gay community members.

  • 13th July 2007

    Gay MEP accuses David Cameron of ignoring homophobia 2

    The Leader of the Opposition did not respond to Mr Cashman's letters.

    4:15 PM — Michael Cashman, a Member of the European Parliament for the West Midlands, has revealed he has written to David Cameron three times about the failure of Tory MEPs to vote against homophobia, but has not received a reply.On Wednesday we revealed that five Labour MPs wrote to Mr Cameron in 2006 asking him to distance himself from the homophobic campaign literature used by Sayeeda Warsi at the last election. The Leader of the Opposition did not respond to that letter either.

  • Surgeon General nominee denies he is homophobic 3

    If confirmed, Dr Holsinger wants to tackle issues of childhood obesity, improve emergency services and promote a tobacco-free country.

    2:45 PM — President Bush's nominee for Surgeon General told the US Senate yesterday he is not anti-gay.Dr. James Holsinger has been critcised by gay rights groups, physicians and politicians for writing in 1991 that gay sex is unnatural and unhealthy.In his paper for the United Methodist Church, Holsinger said that gay sex was dangerous because, "when the complementarity of the sexes is breached, injuries and diseases may occur."

  • Nixon aides considered using gay smears against opponents

    Eventually the scheming and plotting of Nixon's aides led to his resignation.

    11:25 AM — Newly released memos, recordings and other documents have revealed that US President Richard Nixon was keen to smear his opponents by associating them with the nascent gay rights movement.During the 1972 election campaign, Nixon aides also tried to link Democrat candidate John McGovern and his running mate Sargent Shriver to the mafia, slavery and left-wing activists.Meanwhile, the President himself was concerned that he was not seen as a nice person.

  • Australian government reject gay judge’s pension plan

    Mr Ruddock's rejection of calls for equality are in keeping with the overall attitude of the federal Australian government towards gay and lesbian citizens.

    10:43 AM — The Attorney General of Australia has said he will not change the pension arrangements of judges so that same-sex partners are given the same provision as spouses.The country's Parliament is considering changes to judge's pension, and opposition politicians have pointed out that this would be a good opportunity to change the law in favour of equality.One of Australia's most respected judges, Michael Kirby, is openly gay.

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