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Middle East

  • 12th January 2012

    Tel Aviv ‘best gay city destination’ of 2011 49

    Tel Aviv pride events are generally more peaceful than in Jerusalem (Photo: Guy Yitzhaki)

    3:43 PM — The city of Tel Aviv in Israel was dubbed the best gay travel destination of last year but the poll has caused concerns to resurface over alleged human rights "pinkwashing".

  • 12th December 2011

    Tel Aviv gay park ‘becoming too dangerous’ 28

    The park has seen a number of assaults in recent months

    10:08 AM — A Tel Aviv park popular with the gay community is becoming too dangerous after a series of attacks, campaigners say. Gan Meir park, where the city's gay community centre is based, has seen a number of anti-gay assaults in recent months.

  • 24th November 2011

    US professor: Pro-gay Israeli stance “conceals Palestinian human rights violations” 89

    Israel has publicly promoted Tel Aviv as a destination for gay tourists

    11:41 AM — "Pinkwashing", according to the professor, has emerged as "a deliberate strategy to conceal the continuing violations of Palestinians’ human rights behind an image of modernity." The idea was described as "ludicrous and offensive".

  • 17th November 2011

    Michael Lucas: Beware of the risk of homophobia arising from the Arab Spring 174

    Michael Lucas is the CEO of Lucas Entertainment

    11:12 PM — Gay entertainment mogul Michael Lucas warns of the risks of homophobic Islamist governments forming after the Arab Spring. After decades in power, a brutal dictator in a Muslim country is dramatically deposed by a massive popular uprising. Sound familiar? Of course: that's what happened in Egypt and Libya this year, as part of what's known as the Arab Spring. But it's also what happened in Iran in 1979 -- and that should make us pause for a moment.

  • 13th September 2011

    Gay Iranians come out on Facebook 24

    Homosexuality is illegal in Iran

    4:27 PM — A Facebook group has been set up for gay Iranians to come out and discuss their personal stories. Iran has the death penalty for homosexuality and there is no gay rights movement operating openly within the country.

  • 6th September 2011

    Human rights group claims Iran hanged three men for gay sex 111

    The men were reportedly hanged for sodomy (Photo: Bryant Davidson)

    2:31 PM — A human rights group has claimed that three Iranian men have been hanged for having gay sex. Iran Human Rights, which says it covers news from the country's official news sources, said state-run Iranian news agency ISNA reported the hangings.

  • 12th August 2011

    Tel Aviv LGBT youth centre faces closure 4

    Tel Aviv's gay youth centre may have to close

    1:26 PM — An LGBT youth centre in Tel Aviv may have to close because of financial problems. The Bar Noar centre was the scene of a fatal shooting two years ago, in which a teenage girl and a counsellor died. The perpetrator has not been caught.

  • 5th August 2011

    Israel LGBT youth conference cancelled 95

    Israel will no longer hold the LGBT youth meeting

    4:54 PM — An international LGBT youth conference will no longer be held in Israel after Palestinian gay groups complained. The International LGBTQ Youth and Student Organisation (IGLYO) general assembly was to be held in Tel Aviv in December.

  • 3rd August 2011

    HIV ‘epidemics’ emerging in gay men in North Africa and the Middle East 17

    More cases of HIV in MSM are being found across North Africa and the Middle East

    5:10 PM — New research suggests that HIV epidemics are emerging in North Africa and the Middle East among men who have sex with men (MSM). According to researchers from Weill Cornell Medical College in Qatar, countries such as Egypt, Sudan, Pakistan and Tunisia are seeing high rates of infection in gay and bisexual men.

  • 29th July 2011

    2,000 join Jerusalem Pride 4

    Past Jerusalem Prides have attracted violence (Photo: Guy Yitzhaki)

    12:03 PM — Around 2,000 people joined a largely peaceful pride march in Jerusalem yesterday. The march has attracted violence in the past and 1,000 police officers were on the streets.

  • 4th July 2011

    Pakistan Muslim groups condemn US embassy gay meeting 126

    The US embassy held a gay rights event

    3:32 PM — Muslim groups in Pakistan have condemned a gay rights event at the US embassy as "social and cultural terrorism". The June 26th meeting, hosted by US deputy ambassador, Richard Hoagland, was held to support LGBT people in the country

  • 27th June 2011

    Michael Lucas: ‘Poisonous’ anti-Israel lobby should not complain over LGBT meeting 420

    Michael Lucas says the conference should go ahead

    6:33 PM — Gay porn producer Michael Lucas says an LGBT youth conference should be held in Israel, despite objections from critics.

  • Peter Tatchell: Holding LGBT conference in Israel will inflame homophobia 78

    Peter Tatchell says the LGBT meeting should not be held in Israel

    6:10 PM — Gay rights campaigner Peter Tatchell says that holding the International LGBTQ Youth and Student Organisation general assembly in Israel will inflame homophobia, cause divisions and stop delegates from the Muslim world attending.

  • 19th June 2011

    Row after Israeli airport staff strip search Barcelona gay rights leader’s boyfriend 231

    Tel Aviv Pride took place last week (Photo: Matthew Lawton)

    12:01 PM — Two of the leading members of Barcelona's LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans) community have claimed that they were subjected to humiliating security checks while trying to fly home to Spain from Israel's Ben Gurion Airport. Israel's Ministry of Foreign Affairs has criticised the actions by airport security staff.

  • 16th June 2011

    Comment: What life is really like for gay Syrians 28

    Even 'open-minded' people condemn homosexuality, says Sami Hamwi

    5:01 PM — Sami Hamwi, the Syria editor of GayMiddleEast.com, offers a glimpse of what LGBT life is really like in the country.

  • 13th June 2011

    Man defends hoax ‘Gay Girl in Damascus’ blog 34

    The author of the blog says he has not harmed anyone

    2:44 PM — The author of the hoax 'Gay Girl in Damascus' blog has defended the deception and says he may even write a book about his experience. Tom MacMaster, a 40-year-old US student at the University of Edinburgh, admitted last night that he was 'Amina Arraf' but said the hoax had not harmed anyone.

  • Gay Girl in Damascus blog written by 40-year-old Edinburgh man 23

    Mr MacMaster admitted to being the author of the blog

    10:46 AM — A 40-year-old married man in Edinburgh has admitted to being the author of the Gay Girl in Damascus blog. Tom MacMaster, an American graduate student at the University of Edinburgh, admitted pretending to be Amina Arraf but said he believed the hoax had not harmed anyone.

  • 10th June 2011

    Tens of thousands expected at Tel Aviv Gay Pride 11

    Marchers get ready for 2011's Tel Aviv Pride

    10:34 AM — Tens of thousands of people are expected to join Tel Aviv Pride in Israel today. The day kicked off with a fair at Meir Park and will end with a party at Gordon Beach, where the march concludes.

  • 9th June 2011

    Confusion over ‘kidnapped’ lesbian Syrian blogger 8

    The Syrian blogger's identity is a mystery

    3:50 PM — There is confusion over the identity of a lesbian blogger allegedly kidnapped in Syria. Supporters claimed earlier this week that Amina Arraf, the author of the Gay Girl in Damascus blog, had been detained by Syrian security forces.

  • 7th June 2011

    ‘Gay girl in Damascus’ blogger feared kidnapped 12

    Fears are growing that Amina Abdallah, who blogged about being a lesbian in Syria, has been abducted

    5:15 PM — Relatives of Amina Abdallah, author of the "Gay Girl in Damascus" blog, say she has been abducted.

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