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UK

  • 28th June 2007

    Blair questioned again by police over peerages

    A spokesman at Scotland Yard told the BBC that the Metropolitan Police was “not prepared to discuss“ the inquiry.

    2:48 PM — As it was announced that the by election to replace Tony Blair as an MP will be held on the 19th or 26th July, it emerged that Scotland Yard detectives questioned him for a third time before he left office as part of the investigation into 'cash for honours.'In one of her last actions as Chief Whip, Jacqui Smith moved writs in the House of Commons to start the by election process.Mr Brown appointed Ms Smith as Home Secretary today, the first woman to hold the office.

  • Blears appointment welcomed by gay organisation 4

    She has an excellent record on gay rights.

    1:50 PM — Stonewall has welcomed Hazel Blears to her new role as Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government.She has an excellent record on gay rights, voting for the equalisation of the age of consent, for the rights of gay couples to adopt, for civil partnerships and against Section 28.By contrast, Ruth Kelly absented herself from every vote on gay rights until she was appointed as Communities Secretary.

  • New PM makes radical changes to the Cabinet 4

    Labour's newly elected Deputy Leader, Harriet Harman, has been appointed Leader of the House of Commons.

    12:30 PM — Details of wide-ranging reshuffle are slowly emerging from Downing St, with new Prime Minister Gordon Brown signalling his determination to break with the Blair years.David Miliband becomes Foreign Secretary at the age of 41.A poll of PinkNews.co.uk readers in May found 27% wanted Mr Miliband as next Prime Minister and 13% wanted Gordon Brown. His elevation to one of the top jobs in the government allows Mr Miliband to continue his work on climate change.

  • Hazel Blears appointed Minister for Equality 4

    During her campaign for Deputy Leader of the Labour Party she accused the Conservative Party of being “riddled with homophobia.“

    12:01 PM — The former Labour Party chair and unsuccessful candidate for the deputy leadership, Hazel Blears, has been appointed Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government.Ms Blears will have responsibility for equality issues in her new job, including gay rights and the new Commission for Equality and Human Rights.During her campaign for Deputy Leader of the Labour Party she accused the Conservative Party of being "riddled with homophobia."

  • Ruth Kelly moved from gay rights role 4

    Ms Kelly is the new Secretary of State for Transport.

    11:50 AM — Controversial Cabinet minister Ruth Kelly has been retained by new Prime Minister Gordon Brown, but placed far away from any controversy over her religious views.Ms Kelly is the new Secretary of State for Transport.In her previous role at Communities and Local Government she was heavily criticised for delaying the implementation of the Sexual Orientation Regulations.

  • Gang targeting gay men in Brighton

    The gang hurled homophobic abuse, before physically attacking their victim and robbing him.

    11:47 AM — Police in Brighton, a city often referred to as the gay capital of England, have issued a warning after two vicious homophobic attacks left their victims seriously injured.The attacks, which both occurred around the Preston Park area, are thought to be the work of one gang described as four Afro-Carribean men in a red saloon.In the first incident, a 39 and 36 year-old male couple were walking along Hamilton Road, near the park.

  • Gordon Brown appoints gay adviser to key role

    Mr Livermore was appointed as a Special Adviser to Chancellor Brown in May 2005.

    11:30 AM — Spencer Livermore has been appointed director of political strategy at No 10. The 32-year-old has unrivalled access to the new Prime Minister and will play a key role in shaping the direction of the Brown government.Mr Livermore was ranked seven in this year's Independent Pink List, making him the most powerful gay person in UK politics.He read economics and politics at the London School of Economics before joining the Labour Party economic research unit in 1997.

  • Review: Angels in America

    The play revolves around two couples. Louis is a narcissistic and neurotic Jew, who lives with Prior, a WASP from a historic family that came off the Mayflower.

    11:20 AM — The Pulitzer-winning Angels in America is divided into two parts, set in the mid-nineteen eighties and following the terrible dawning of the AIDS crisis in America. The first part is entitled Millennium Approaches, and the second, Perestroika.The play revolves around two couples. Louis is a narcissistic and neurotic Jew, who lives with Prior, a WASP from a historic family that came off the Mayflower.In the first act, Prior reveals that he has AIDS and has discovered a lesion.

  • 27th June 2007

    Tony Blair resigns as an MP to become peace envoy

    Tony Blair will resign as an MP

    5:35 PM — Tony Blair has resigned as the MP for Sedgefield just hours after resigning as Prime Minister.He was confirmed at 5pm as the new envoy for the Quartet (EU, USA, UN and Russia) on resolving the Israel-Palestine conflict.Mr Blair, who has introduced a wide range of gay rights in his ten years in power, was not expected to remain in the House of Commons.

  • New Prime Minister’s first speech in full

    Gordon Brown addressed reporters outside No 10 Downing St this afternoon in his first speech as Prime Minister.

    3:38 PM — Gordon Brown addressed reporters outside No 10 Downing St this afternoon in his first speech as Prime Minister:"I have just accepted the invitation of Her Majesty the Queen to form a government."This will be a new government with new priorities and I have been privileged to have been granted the great opportunity to serve my country."

  • Gordon Brown takes office as Prime Minister

    Mr Brown pledged to reach across party divides to work in the national interest.

    3:05 PM — The Queen has asked Gordon Brown to form a government. The new Prime Minister spent nearly an hour with Her Majesty at Buckingham Palace this afternoon.Arriving at Downing St just before 3pm he told journalists: "this will be a new Government with new priorities."Mr Brown appeared with his wife Sarah outside No 10 Downing St, but unlike his predecessor his children were not present.

  • LGBT abuse group secures Justice funding

    Galop has worked closely with the police and were asked to sit on the Metropolitan Police's community Gold Group after the murder of Jody Debrowski.

    1:15 PM — An organisation that helps victims of hate crimes, sexual abuse and violence have been given over £35,000 by the new Ministry of Justice.Galop's award comes at a time when homophobic hate crimes are widely under-reported due to fear of the victims, humiliation or lack of information on the importance of reporting.A lack of confidence in police and statutory services is also a factor.

  • Standing ovation for Tony Blair at last PMQ

    “One of the outstanding Prime Ministers in my political lifetime and the most politically effective the party has ever had.“

    12:45 PM — The Prime Minister gave a vintage performance during his last appearance at the dispatch box in the House of Commons.Flanked by departing Deputy Prime Minister John Prescott and incoming Prime Minister Gordon Brown, Mr Blair began by paying tribute to three soldiers who have died in action in the last week, and to the Armed Forces as a whole."I am truly sorry about the dangers they face today," he told MPs.

  • Gays urged to think green at Pride

    photo: kyle simourd@flickr.com

    11:20 AM — With a poll showing that only one in five Londoners claim to be doing anything to tackle climate change, The Environment Agency joins this Saturday's Pride to encourage the LGBT community to act.Led by Lisa Pinney, head of the Environment Agency LGBT network, more than twenty members and friends are taking part, celebrating the agency's diversity and helping promote their work.Marching under the banner, 'Proud to be at Pride,' a separate stall in Soho will allow people to take part in the world's largest survey on climate change.

  • Blair’s record on gay rights praised

    Mr Blair is expected to immediately resign as an MP, meaning today's PMQ will be his last appearance in the House of Commons.

    11:10 AM — The government's progress on gay rights has been praised by leading members of the gay community and politicians from all sides.Tony Blair leaves office today after ten years in office. During his tenure the rights of LGBT people in Britain have been transformed.Mr Blair is to take up a new role as a peace envoy to the Middle East on behalf of the UN, America, Russia and the EU - an announcement on the job will be made later today.

  • TURING: Forty years on 1

    It is tomfoolery to think that the rest of the world will pay attention to the societal dynamics of Britain in a way that international media does to those of the United States.

    10:40 AM — Sexual minorities in the UK have every right to exercise and celebrate their hard-won rights. But the time has not yet come to take things for granted.Insofar as one considers the historical period dominated by the three major monotheistic religions, homosexuals have always been the subjects of pillory, hate, persecution, and unusually severe punishments

  • 26th June 2007

    London Pride reception held at City Hall

    Mr Livingstone also spoke about the rise of homophobia across Europe. photo: joe roberts

    6:30 PM — At an official gay Pride function in London last night, the city's mayor Ken Livingstone told an audience of 400 people that he will be taking part in the march this year- but cannot decide on whether or not to appear on a float.The reception, sponsored by Morgan Stanley, brought together Pride organisers, City Hall staff and volunteers and others from across the LGBT community.Mr Livingstone spoke of his long support for gay rights.

  • Blair to step down as an MP

    Traditionally former Prime Ministers are offered a seat in the House of Lords once they leave the Commons.

    6:15 PM — The Prime Minister will resign as MP for Sedgefield within hours of leaving Downing St, it has been reported.He is expected to take up a new peace-keeping role in the Middle East on behalf of the international community almost immediately.It was expected that Mr Blair, who has introduced a wide range of gay rights in his ten years in power, would not remain in the House of Commons after the next general election.

  • Labour gays voted Cruddas for deputy

    LGBT Labour is an affiliated society of the Labour party, meaning its members can vote along with members of trade unions and other societies.

    3:36 PM — A breakdown of the votes cast by the members of the Labour Campaign for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Rights (LGBT Labour) has revealed that backbench candidate Jon Cruddas was their choice for Deputy Leader.Justice Minister Harriet Harman won the contest to succeed John Prescott on Sunday, after five rounds of voting.She eventually took the lead with 50.43% to Education Secretary Alan Johnson's 49.56%

  • Anti-gay Tory defects to Labour 10

    In March 2007 he was one of the Tory MPs who defied their own front  bench and tried to stop the Sexual Orientation Regulations in House of Commons.

    3:15 PM — An MP with a hostile voting record on gay issues has defected from the Conservatives to the Labour party.Quentin Davies, a former Tory Shadow Cabinet member, has been an MP for 20 years and represents Grantham, the home town of former Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher.He announced his defection the day before Tony Blair is to leave office, and attacked Tory leader David Cameron in his resignation letter.

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