7th February 2008
Judge reduces hate church compensation payout 1
12:35 PM — Westboro Baptist Church must pay $5m (£2.5m) in compensation to a soldier's father who sued them for protesting outside his son's funeral a judge has ruled.At an earlier hearing last October Albert Synder was awarded $10.9m for emotional distress and invasion of privacy.The Kansas church, led by Reverend Fred Phelps, is known for its protests at military funerals where its members attribute America's problems to its liberal stance towards homosexuality.
6th February 2008
Clinton retains slight lead in delegate count 7
10:00 PM — Every delegate counts, Presidential hopefuls Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama are finding, as the fight for the Democratic nomination continues the morning after Super Tuesday.According to CNN.com, at current count, Clinton has the slight edge over the Senator from Illinois—823 total delegates to his 731.And while Clinton took several key states—among them California, Massachusetts and New York.
Poll exposes high levels of Russian homophobia
4:30 PM — New data released yesterday in Moscow has found that just 5% of Russians do not view homosexuality as morally unacceptable.The Levada-Centre, a well-respected polling organisation, held a poll last year and found that negative attitudes to gay people are on the increase.Just last year 47% of people condemned LGB people. In December's poll 84% of respondents said they find homosexuality morally unacceptable reports Kommersant.com.
Coroner concludes Ledger died of accidental overdose
4:30 PM — The New York City Medical Examiner has determined that 28-year-old actor Heath Ledger died of an accidental overdose of prescription medication.Ledger was discovered in his New York apartment on January 22nd, setting into motion a media firestorm of speculation and accusation on the actor's apparent drug use.Now autopsy results have found Ledger died of a lethal combination of anti-anxiety pills and sleep aids.
HIV infections up 20% in Sweden 2
4:21 PM — 500 people were newly diagnosed as HIV positive in Sweden in 2007 according to data published by the Swedish Institute for Infectious Disease Control (SMI).That number represents a rise of 20% on 2006.There has been a 70% rise in the number of people infected within Sweden, though the majority of new HIV patients still come into contact with the virus abroad.
Obama and Clinton both win on Super Tuesday
3:00 PM — With the results from yesterday's primaries and caucuses in nearly half of the United States counted, it appears that the Republicans have chosen their candidate for President while the Democrats are still unable to choose between a woman and a black man.Senator John McCain, the 71-year-old war hero and former Vietnam prisoner of war, took nine of the 21 states voting in the Republican contests.The big surprise of the night was former Governor of Arkansas Mike Hucakee.
Questions over MrCain’s eligibility for Presidency
2:50 PM — With Arizona Senator John McCain finishing on Super Tuesday as the likely Republican presidential front runner, a strange new question about his eligibility for the office has bubbled up on the internet.As someone born in the Panama Canal Zone, is McCain a "natural born" US citizen, as required of the President by the country's Constitution?In an op-ed piece posted this week, American Voice Radio's Francis Steffan states that John McCain is not eligible for the position of President of the United States, because he is not a "natural born citizen."
Condoms still vital in fight against HIV says UNAIDS 3
2:23 PM — A report that asserts that HIV positive people undergoing effective anti-retroviral treatments carry "no relevant risk of transmission" has been greeted with caution by UNAIDS.Last week the Swiss Federal Commission for HIV/AIDS announced that "an HIV-infected person on anti-retroviral therapy with completely suppressed viremia ("effective ART") is not sexually infectious, i.e. cannot propagate HIV through sexual contact."The commission said: "residual risk can not be scientifically excluded, but is ... negligibly small."
Egypt accused of criminalising HIV positive gay men
1:11 PM — Four men convicted last month by a court in Cairo of consensual homosexual sex are the victims of state prejudice against people with HIV, according to a leading human rights organisation.A series of arrests began when one man, challenged by police during a street altercation with another man, told officers he is HIV positive.Both were arrested and investigated for homosexual conduct and had to undergo anal examinations that would be used as "proof" they had sex, says Human Rights Watch.
April elections likely in Italy after dissolution of parliament
12:25 PM — The President of Italy today formally dissolved the country's parliament after the coalition government fell apart last month.Romano Prodi, who resigned as Prime Minister but remained in a caretaker role, is expected to hold a cabinet meeting later today to fix a date for new elections.Reports from Rome indicate that April 13th or 14th are the most likely dates. Romano Prodi's government fell after he lost a vote of confidence in the Italian Senate last week.
Abercrombie store accused of displaying “obscene material” 1
11:30 AM — An Abercrombie Fitch store in Virginia Beach, Virginia, will soon be decked out as it always has been, with black and white photos of half-naked boys and girls frolicking in fields.That's because the city officials plan to return a pair of promotional photographs, one of which shows a shirtless man wearing jeans that reveal the top of his buttocks and another which shows a topless woman whose hand is covering a portion of her breast, that were taken from the store last weekend after a police officer cited its manager with violating city code.
Clinton and McCain score California victories 7
8:30 AM — New York Senator Hillary Clinton has been declared the winner over Illinois Senator Barack Obama in the Democratic race in California on Super Tuesday. Arizona Senator John McCain is the projected winner in the California Republican primary Super Tuesday results over former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney.With 16 percent of precincts reporting in the California Democratic primary, Mrs Clinton leads over Mr Obama 55 per cent to 33 per cent.
5th February 2008
Huckabee wins early Super Tuesday victory 1
11:15 PM — Former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee is the first winner in the massive Super Tuesday series of primaries and caucuses across the nation. Mr Huckabee won handily over former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney in the West Virginia state convention on Tuesday morning.Although Mr Romney has won the first round of votes in the West Virginia state convention, he did not take more than a 50 percent majority.
Hillary and Barack court gay voters 7
5:45 PM — The frontrunners for the Democratic party nomination for President of the United States have been highlighting their gay-friendly credentials ahead of today's vital primary contests.New York Senator and former First Lady Hillary Clinton posted a message on lesbian website ourchart.com outlining why she thinks LGBT Americans should vote for her.Illinois Senator Barack Obama has revealed that many gay supporters of John Edwards, who withrdrew from the race last week, are now supporting him.
LGBT Palestinian organisation formed in Jerusalem 1
4:10 PM — A long-established group for gay, lesbian, trans and bisexual Palestinians in Jerusalem has decided to become independent.Al-Qaws began life six years ago as a project of the Jerusalem Open House for Pride and Tolerance (JOH).In branching out on its own it becomes the first-ever official Palestinian gay organisation. In November Al-Qaws received nonprofit organisation status and was renamed Al-Qaws - for Sexual Gender Diversity in the Palestinian Society.
Turkish gay group court challenge delayed 5
2:40 PM — A group of supporters of a gay rights group threatened with closure have been accused of demonstrating outside a Turkish court.A department of the Istanbul Governor's office responsible for non-governmental organisations alleges that the group, Lambda Istanbul, violates Turkish laws on morality.They claim that Lambda violates both the Penal Code, as an association in violation of "law and morals," and Article 41 of the Turkish constitution, which is concerned with "the peace and welfare of the family."
Maverick Republican’s hopes for Alaska primary
1:10 PM — Texas Congressman Ron Paul is hoping Alaska will be the one state where he can claim a surprise win on Super Tuesday among voters known for their unpredictability in choosing presidential candidates.Paul is banking on an organised campaign in the state, where few others have dared to tread to win voters' loyalty. There are no solid polls in place to take a look into the future of the Alaska races.
Men arrested in Senegal over “gay wedding” photos 5
11:54 AM — Gay rights activists have called for a group of men arrested in Senegal on suspicion of homosexuality to be released from prison.In a letter to Senegalese Minister of Justice, the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission (IGLHRC) and PAN-Africa ILGA have demanded the immediate and unconditional release of up to 20 gay men.An unknown number have been arrested in Dakar, the Senegalese capital, since Sunday morning.
Candidates fight for votes in Alabama 7
11:30 AM — New York Senator Hillary Clinton and Arizona Senator John McCain are battling for a win in the Alabama primary results.Clinton holds a slight lead among voters over rival Illinois Senator Barack Obama going into the race, while McCain maintains a small margin over former Governor of Arkansas Mike Huckabee in the Super Tuesday primary.In a Rasmussen Reports poll conducted Jan 31, Clinton led Obama 46 to 41 percent among likely Democratic voters.
4th February 2008
Gay Holocaust memorial to be built in Berlin 3
3:50 PM — A multi-media memorial to the thousands of gay men who died in Nazi concentration camps should be ready in a matter of months.It is being constructed opposite the main Holocaust memorial for Jewish victims in Tiergarten Park in Berlin at a cost of 600,000 euros (£450,000).The government agreed to the design last week, four years after the memorial was agreed in principle.