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Politics

  • 31st July 2007

    Police finally authorise Estonian Pride

    Last year LGBT marchers were attacked with sticks and stones by a group of young Estonian nationalists.

    11:40 AM — After gay rights advocates protested to Estonia's President and Prime Minister, police in the capital Tallinn have finally ruled that a Pride march can go ahead.The event, on August 11th, has been beset by problems with policing.Officials wanted to change the route of the march through the Old Town, claiming that it would infringe the rights of other Tallinn residents to go about their business.

  • 30th July 2007

    Comment: How PinkNews.co.uk changed the gay media 2

    Former Editor Marc Shoffman, “Politican of the Year“, Baroness Ashton with PinkNews.co.uk founder Benjamin Cohen at the Stonewall awards

    6:33 PM — PinkNews.co.uk founder Benjamin Cohen reflects on the first two years of this unique publication.PinkNews.co.uk was born minutes before the 38th anniversary of the Royal Assent of the Sexual Offences Act - the legislation that partially decriminalised male homosexuality in England and Wales.This weekend we have been celebrating four decades of laws making the lives of British LGBT people better, while I was also celebrating two years of this website.

  • Georgia’s homophobia exposed in row over “gay” rally

    Georgia is a highly religious country which prides itself on its traditional Christian values.

    11:50 AM — Organisers of a rally celebrating diversity and tolerance in the eastern European country of Georgia were forced to call off the event after it was falsely reported as a gay Pride parade.The rally, part of the Council of Europe 'All Different, All Equal' diversity and human rights campaign, was cancelled when organisers, Georgian human rights group Century 21, received abusive telephone calls, emails and threats of violence.The abuse started after Georgian paper Alia reported that "pederasts" were getting ready for a parade in the capital, Tbilisi.

  • Lesbian candidate fails to win seat in Japan

    Ms Otsuji was elected as an Osaka Assembly Member in April 2003.

    11:35 AM — A 32-year-old woman who brought the issue of gay rights to prominence in Japanese society has failed in her bid to be elected to the country's parliament.Kanako Otsuji, 32, had conducted a colourful and positive campaign for office, at one stage holding a marriage ceremony with her partner.She was a candidate for the Democratic Party of Japan, who took control of the upper house in a crushing election defeat for Prime Minister Shinze Abe.

  • 29th July 2007

    Interview: The Tory who wants to boff Boris

    Boff assures me that he can beat Henley MP and TV regular Boris Johnson, stressing that London needs a competent mayor and not a media darling.

    2:10 PM — PinkNews.co.uk exclusive"It's obvious I'm gay. The blind know I am gay," Andrew Boff exclaims towards the end of our meeting.And he may be right. Practically every news report about the Tory party's selection of a candidate to take on Ken Livingstone for Mayor of London uses the 'gay' tag to describe him.In the flesh he is far from the media stereotype of a gay man.

  • 27th July 2007

    Lib Dems attack Tory gay rights record 5

    The Lib Dem report states that Tory leader David Cameron and key Shadow Cabinet collegaues William Hague, David Davis and George Osborne all voted against the repeal of Section 28 and against same-sex adoption in 2002.

    6:30 PM — The Liberal Democrats have marked the 40th anniversary of the partial decriminalisation of male homosexuality in England and Wales by producing a report attacking the voting records of Conservative front benchers.However, a Conservative spokesman accused them of getting their facts wrong.The Lib Dem research found that 80% of the current Shadow Cabinet have voted against gay rights in the ten years since Labour took office.

  • Follett named Equality Minister as new office established 2

    Ms Follett, 64, the MP for Stevenage since 1997, is married to author Ken Follett.

    5:50 PM — Prime Minister Gordon Brown has announced a shake-up of the machinery of government with regards to equality.He informed the House of Commons yesterday that the Women and Equality Unit, currently part of the Department for Communities and Local Government, will move to the Department for Work and Pensions as part of a new Government Equalities Office.The Women and Equality Unit was instrumental in pushing forward gay rights legislation.

  • Hungarian PM calls Pride attacks “outrageous”

    The Prime Minister said the whole country should join in the debate over gay rights.

    2:11 PM — The Prime Minister of Hungary, Ferenc Gyurcsány, has said he utterly condemns people who pelted a gay Pride in Budapest with eggs and attacked revellers.On Saturday 10th July skinheads and fascists massed along the 7km (4.3 mile) route of the march for gay rights.They threw eggs and bottles filled with sand at the marchers. Later that evening almost a dozen gay people were set upon and beaten.

  • Activists target UN General Secretary over gay rights

    Protesters ambushed UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon as he spoke in San Fransisco.

    1:35 PM — Protesters ambushed UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon as he spoke in San Fransisco last night, demanding he break the UN's silence on lesbian, gay and bisexual rights around the world.Standing on their seats, the protesters, holding a sign reading 'Gay rights are UNiversal' chanted: "Break the silence, talk about gays."

  • Executed Iranians may have been gay 14

    Homosexuality is illegal in Iran and is seen as a violation against God.

    10:27 AM — Expatriate Iranian sources are reporting that some of the 16 peoplehanged last week, labelled 'the most famous hooligans in Tehran', were executed for being gay.Islamic law states that all sexual acts outside of a heterosexualmarriage - referred to as sodomy - are forbidden.As part of a wide-ranging crackdown on 'indecent behaviour', policearrested over 1000 men in May in poor districts around Tehran.

  • 26th July 2007

    Translating machine to replace sacked gay linguists 2

    Since 1993, more than 11,000 service members have been dismissed under the gay ban, according to the US Department of Defence.

    11:23 AM — After firing 60 Arabic translators for being gay under the 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell' law, the US military has been forced to rely on an untested translating machine, it emerged this week.US National Institute of Standards and Technology researchers are now testing a prototype, real-time, two-way translation system to meet the shortfall of translators in Iraq, where linguistic misunderstandings can be fatal.

  • Pressure on mayor in robo-toilet row 2

    “Mayor Naugle's comments and his lack of remorse for dividing his community are wrong. “

    10:58 AM — The Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) has condemned Fort Lauderdale Mayor Jim Naugle for the divisive and defamatory terminology he has used to describe the gay community.The New York-based organisation also stood with residents of Fort Lauderdale as well as members of various local and national organisations as they gathered yesterday to speak out against the Mayor's offensive comments.

  • 25th July 2007

    US to hold personal data on EU travellers until 2022 7

    The Ministry of Justice declined to comment on why the DHS would need access details of a passenger's sexuality or meal choices in life-threatening situations.

    5:47 PM — The Liberal Democrats have expressed concern over an EU agreement to give the US Department of Homeland Security unprecedented access to the personal information of passengers on transatlantic flights.The European Commission quietly approved the agreement on Monday.It gives the DHS access to the personal information of anyone on a transatlantic flight, which could include details of their sexual orientation.

  • Microchip tracking scheme for HIV+ people condemned

    “We need to make a major breakthrough to speed up the fight against AIDS in Papua,“ said lawmaker John Manansang.

    2:40 PM — Health officials in Papua, Indonesia, are "outraged" over proposals to implant microchips in people with HIV/AIDS to monitor their sexual activity.The Legislative Council of the province is deliberating a by-law allowing authorities to monitor the actions of patients with 'high risk behaviour' using a detection device.Parliamentarians have also reportedly discussed tattooing people carrying the virus.

  • Lesbian couple question Presidential hopefuls

    A lesbian couple from New York asked whether the Democratic candidates would grant them the right to get married.

    1:08 PM — A lesbian couple and a southern Baptist pastor quizzed Democratic presidential candidates about their views on same-sex marriage in a landmark debate on Monday night.Users submitted more than 3,000 video questions via video sharing site YouTube, and according to the debate's CNN host Anderson Cooper, same-sex marriage emerged as a popular issue.The lesbian couple, from New York, asked whether the Democratic candidates would grant them the right to get married.

  • Activists demand investigation into Pride explosion 1

    This year gay marchers in Tarija and Cochabamba took to the streets for the first time.

    12:48 PM — Human rights advocates are urging the authorities in Bolivia to properly investigate an explosion at a Pride event last month that injured several people.The incident occurred in the capital city of La Paz on the 30th June, the same day as London Pride.While celebrating Respect For Sexual Diversities Day in the city, and just before the parade started, one of the floats was attacked with dynamite.

  • House of Commons marks decriminalisation

    It is fitting that in 2007, three of the signatories of today's EDM, Chris Bryant, Nick Herbert and Stephen Williams were all elected as  out and pround gay men.

    11:44 AM — MPs from across the political divide have signed an Early Day Motion celebrating the 40th anniversary of the partial decriminalisation of homosexuality in England and Wales.The EDM was sponsored by Stephen Williams, the Liberal Democrat MP for Bristol West.Other signatories include Nick Herbert and John Bercow, both Tories, and Chris Byrant, the Labour MP for Rhonnda.

  • 24th July 2007

    US given sexual orientation information on travellers 7

    Franco Frattini, vice president of the European Commission, said more sensitive information would be filtered out

    4:04 PM — The European Commission quietly approved an agreement this Monday which gives the US Department of Homeland Security unprecedented access to the personal information of anyone on a transatlantic flight, including details of their sexual orientation.The DHS insists on the right to use the information for disease control, and there are fears that gay passengers may be singled out as possible HIV risks.The agreement adds 19 possible new categories, including details of passengers' sex lives.

  • Elton John still standing with Nepalese gay community 2

    The Elton John AIDS Foundation has raised more than $125m (£63m).

    3:57 PM — The Elton John AIDS Foundation has expressed its support for the work of the Nepal's only gay rights organisation, the Blue Diamond Society.In a statement to be sent to government departments in the Himalayan country, the foundation's executive director Robert Kay said they were proud to be associated with BDS's work on safe sex education.Mr John today revealed his guilt at not speaking up for gay rights earlier in his career.

  • University honours MEP for gay rights work

    Mr Cashman co-founded gay equality organisation Stonewall in 1989 and is president of the European Parliament's Intergroup on Gay and Lesbian Rights.

    12:41 PM — Michael Cashman, the Labour politician, actor and campaigner for gay rights, has been awarded an honourary degree by Staffordshire University.Before he became an MEP in 1999, his ground-breaking portrayal of Colin Russell in EastEnders between 1986 and 1989 saw the first gay kiss in a UK soap.Mr Cashman co-founded gay equality organisation Stonewall in 1989 and is president of the European Parliament's Intergroup on Gay and Lesbian Rights.

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