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Politics

  • 10th January 2007

    Gay groups welcome Lords decision 15

    The House of Lords debate coincided with a protest of around 1,000 evangelical Christians and Muslims.

    3:04 PM — Gay and lesbian groups have welcomed the vote in the House of Lords last night which confirmed the introduction of the Sexual Orientation Regulations in Northern Ireland.The Gay and Lesbian Humanist Association expressed their pleasure that a campaign of campaign of "distortion and exaggeration" had been defeated.

  • COMMENT: Eye-witness report from last night’s protest 15

    Outside the House of Lords, where I found myself tonight, there were “hundreds of people“ (I would say about 2000) demonstrating in support of the motion.

    2:23 PM — It was not just protesters out in Parliament Square last night. Blogger Nicolas Chinardet went along to meet the enemy, and was surprised to find some of them confused about the actual nature of the Sexual Orientation Regulations. Here is his account of events outside the House of Lords. I am still a little cold almost an hour after I got home. But looking back it was all worth it.

  • Rebel Labour MPs attempt to weaken gay hate law 100

    Gay equality organisation Stonewall welcomed last night's vote on the new offence of homophobic incitement.

    1:58 PM — Twelve Labour MPs defied the government last night to vote in favour of an amendment to the proposed offence of incitement to hatred on the grounds of sexual orientation.The amendment sought to allow "discussion of, criticism of, or expression of antipathy towards conduct relating to a particular sexual orientation, or urging persons of a particular sexual orientation to refrain from or modify conduct according to that orientation."It was defeated by 338 to 169. Five Tory MPs voted against the amendment.

  • Stonewall reveals top employers for gay people

    Any organisation can take part free of charge.

    1:49 PM — The third annual Stonewall Workplace Equality Index, which lists the top employers for gay people, has revealed that companies and organisations across the country are making progress in encouraging and supporting their gay staff.To qualify as one of the 100 best UK employers in 2007, bosses had to demonstrate significantly higher standards of good practice in a wide range of areas.

  • Malaysian politician sues over gay smears

    Now he has challenged Mathahir to appear in court and defend his persistent allegationa that former deputy PM Anwar is gay.

    11:40 AM — Anwar Ibrahim, the former deputy prime minister of Malaysia, has hit back at charges that he is gay.Anwar was imprisoned on charges of sodomy and corruption in 1998, but after six years behind bars the sodomy charge was overturned.He claims that his former boss Mathahir Mohammad, prime minister from 1981 to 2003, is trying to wreck his reputation and that the allegation of homosexuality is false.

  • 8th January 2007

    Police in Peru accused of gay assaults

    The homosexual rights movement in Peru has been slow to take hold.

    1:26 PM — A gay rights group in Peru has accused police officers of carrying out systematic attacks on gay people in the country .The Lima Homosexual Movement claims that figures they have compiled show over 600 homophobic assaults in the country over the last year.A spokesman for the movement, Jorge Bracamonte, has accused the police of assaulting gay and transvestite prostitutes and other LGBT people.

  • Ruth Kelly attacked for hypocrisy over choice of school 1

    Ms Kelly is by no means the first Labour minister to decide that state provision was not adequate for their child.

    12:14 PM — Controversial Communities Secretary Ruth Kelly has been heavily criticised by Labour MPs after it was revealed that she has sent one of her children to a private school.The beleaguered cabinet member, who was Secretary of State for Education from 2004 until last year, has left fellow MPs fuming at yet another controversial decision.Ms Kelly has been widely criticised for delaying the introduction of new regulations that will protect LGBT people from discrimination when accessing goods and services.

  • Analysis: From student radical to Presidential candidate

    When did she become that old, that Establishment, when her soul tells her she is still fighting for the same things she's always believed in?

    10:45 AM — It almost went unnoticed in the fevered pitch leading up to today's primary contest in freezing New Hampshire - but in a front page editorial in the Washington Post's Sunday edition, former 1972 Democratic presidential nominee George McGovern - the Barack Obama of his day - called for the impeachment of President George W. Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney."I have not been heavily involved in singing the praises of the Nixon administration," wrote the former Senator from South Dakota who was trounced by incumbent President Richard Nixon in a 'dirty-tricks' campaign that included the Watergate scandal.

  • 5th January 2007

    COMMENT: Peter Tatchell – A quote for every occasion? 5

    I'm never sure what Peter Tatchell is going to discuss when I see him appear on television - Westminster politics, Iraq, Zimbabwe or gay rights?

    5:00 PM — The execution of Saddam Hussein led commentator Ben Leung to confront his mixed feelings towards gay rights activist Peter Tatchell. Despite staying up the night before for news of his demise, it wasn't until I saw the front-page of The Times newspaper at a windswept Ascot racecourse that I truly accepted that Saddam was dead.The headline of the 4am edition was brief and succinct: 'SADDAM HANGED', two words which not many people could ever have imagined seeing had suddenly become a reality.

  • Gay Congressman takes up key post

    In 1998, he founded the National Stonewall Democrats, a gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender Democratic pressure group.

    12:17 PM — The only out gay man in the new 110th US Congress has been appointed chairman of the powerful Financial Services Committee, and has promised to give shareholders more say over executive salaries.Rep. Barney Frank commented in 1996 that he is used to being in the minority, but thanks to the shift of power in Congress as a result of the November elections the left-handed, Jewish homosexual suddenly finds himself in the driving seat.

  • 4th January 2007

    COMMENT: Congress should scrap “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” 5

    A poll published last month showed that 73% of people currently serving in the US Armed Forces are comfortable with lesbians and gays.

    4:10 PM — A new United States Congress will be sworn in later today. In the November election, the Democratic party seized control of both the House and Senate. PinkNews.co.uk's Tony Grew considers whether the 110th Congress will be the one to finally allow gays and lesbians to serve in the US military. It seems America is finally coming to terms with the fact that there are gay people in their Armed Forces, whether they ask or not.

  • Nepalese gays face new persecution

    LGBT leaders warned last October that their rights might not be protected by the new government.

    4:10 PM — Gangs of Maoist militants have launched a campaign in Nepal against the country's gay and lesbian population.The country's only gay rights organisation, Blue Diamond, reports that this new oppression is sanctioned by Prime Minister, Girija Prasad Koirala.Gays and lesbians in the Himalayan kingdom previously suffered persistent persecution from security forces during the absolutist rule of King Gyanendra.

  • Home Office anti-homophobia campaign gets 5 out of 10

    Gay activists have questioned why the Department for Education and Skills was not involved in the campaign.

    11:50 AM — The charity Schools OUT, which works to combat homophobic bullying in schools, has welcomed the Home Office's new guidance to schools, but has said that overall the government "must do better."Gay activists have questioned why the Department for Education and Skills was not involved in the campaign.

  • Stonewall slams Christian/Muslim protest 8

    Mr Summerskill said that Stonewall had worked over the Christmas period to exert as much pressure as possible in support of the new rules to protect gay and lesbian people from discrimination.

    10:59 AM — PinkNews.co.uk exclusive Gay rights organisation Stonewall has described claims by Christian and Muslim activists that new anti-discrimination regulations will force religious groups to hire gay people as fantasy.Ben Summerskill, Stonewall's chief executive, also accused evangelical Christians of breaking one of the ten commandments.

  • 3rd January 2007

    Muslims urged to join protest against “deviants” 8

    The unusual combination of hardline Christians and Muslims will hold what is billed as a torchlight parade in Westminster next Wednesday.

    4:55 PM — Evangelical Christians will be joined on their protest march on Parliament on January 9th by leading members of the Muslim community.Earlier this week, a group of Christian lawyers announced their intention to petition the Queen and protest at the Palace of Westminster to show their opposition to the proposed regulations to outlaw discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation in the provision of goods and services.

  • Backlash against gay marriage in Massachusetts 57

    Patrick will be sworn in as governor of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts tomorrow, the first African-American to hold that office.

    4:32 PM — Lawmakers in the American state of Massachusetts have approved a referendum on gay marriage. The ballot, which will take place in 2008, will ask voters to ban same-sex marriage.The New England state is currently the only one in the US that has legalised gay marriage.Republicans in the state legislature voted through the measure twice, despite opposition from the governor-elect, Democrat Deval Patrick.

  • Former US Defence Secretary queries “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell” 5

    “It's time to start thinking about it and starting to discuss it,“ he told presenter Wolf Blitzen on CNN.

    3:50 PM — A Republican politician who was in charge of the US Armed Forces for four years has backed calls by a retired chairman of the Joint Chiefs to re-open the debate over the controversial "Don't Ask Don't Tell" policy.William Cohen served as Defence Secretary from 1997 - 2001 under Democrat President Bill Clinton.In an interview last night on CNN, Cohen described the current policy as discriminatory and not reflective of current American public opinion.

  • Government “open to discussion” on homophobic incitement 1

    12:23 PM — PinkNews.co.uk Exclusive A Home Office minister has vowed to review homophobic incitement laws amid calls for anti-gay remarks to be made illegal.Speaking exclusively to PinkNews.co.uk, Police and Security Minister Tony McNulty said that the issue is under review and vowed that once religious and racial incitement laws are implemented it will then be easier to see how to follow up with a law against homophobic harassment.

  • Tatchell calls for Equal Rights Act 1

    “Without universal equality legislation, the new Commission for Equality and Human Rights is bound to be split by divisions and resentments“

    10:50 AM — Gay rights campaigner Peter Tatchell has called on the government to harmonise all discrimination and equality laws into one piece of equal rights legislation.Criticising the "differential levels of protection against discrimination available to different minority groups," Mr Tatchell wants to see the unification of all equal rights legislation in a single Equal Rights Act, based on the current race equality laws.

  • 2nd January 2007

    Bright new dawn for Romanian and Bulgarian gays

    In Romania, the last anti-gay laws were repealed in 2001.

    4:42 PM — Yesterday two more former Eastern Bloc countries joined the European Union. Eighteen years after the fall of Communism, the citizens of Romania and Bulgaria celebrated becoming members of the exclusive Euro club.For the LGBT communities in the two countries, it was also a day of celebration, though not in the way readers might think. Gay rights in the two countries have progressed rapidly in recent years, although acceptance is still confined to major cities.

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