28th January 2008
Russian artists defend gay film festival
10:59 AM — The Russia's first international lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender film festival, Side by Side ("Bok o Bok"), has been causing controversy.Conservatives within the country's artistic community have called for the event to be banned.The State Artist of Russia Nikolai Burlyaev has publicly called gay people "perverts" and homosexuality a "sin" and an "illness" and demanded St Petersburg authorities stop the event.
Kennedys come out in support of Obama 1
10:45 AM — The candidacy of Barack Obama has received a significant boost with the endorsement of two members of one of America's most influential political dynasties.Caroline Kennedy, the daughter of former President John F Kennedy, wrote an highly personal opinion piece in the New York Times yesterday comparing Senator Obama to her father and praising him as an inspirational candidate.Later today Senator Edward Kennedy will appear at a rally with Senator Obama and publicly back his run for the Democratic nomination.
Fox host apologises for mocking Ledger death 2
10:25 AM — Fox news radio host John Gibson has issued an apology for mocking comments made about the death of young actor Heath Ledger during his show.Initially Gibson had refused to apologise, but relented after continued calls for him to be fired.Shortly after Ledger's death, Gibson played an audio clip from Brokeback Mountain of Jake Gyllenhaal's character, Jack.
27th January 2008
Obama wins decisive victory over Clinton
3:00 PM — John Edwards may have been the hometown candidate in the state, but Illinois Senator Barack Obama was the voter's favorite as South Carolina primary results came in on Saturday.Obama won over rival New York Senator Hillary Clinton by a strong margin, while she battled with Edwards for second place.With almost all precincts now reported in, Barack Obama has been declared as the winner over Hillary Clinton in the South Carolina primary.
Big turnout expected in South Carolina primary
3:00 PM — Record turnouts are expected in today's South Carolina Democratic primary as Senators Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama and former Senator John Edwards fight to pull out a victory in the state, in what is seen as a crucial contest.All three candidates canvassed the state today in a last minute effort to drum up support.Democratic party officials predicted a record turnout for voters in the South Carolina primary, with expectations of as many as 350,000 people casting their votes today.
25th January 2008
Date set for Moscow Pride 2008
1:35 PM — Moscow's LGBT community will once again attempt to celebrate Pride on May 31st, organiser Nicolas Alexeyev has announced.In May 2006 and 2007 Pride marches in the city were beset by violence and police intimidation after Mayor Luzhkov refused to grant a permit.He is on record as claiming he will never allow a gay parade to take place in Moscow, and called gay people 'Satanic.'Yesterday an organising committee for Pride was formed.
Sydney looks forward to 30th Mardi Gras 2
12:12 PM — Sydney Gay Lesbian Mardi Gras turns 30 this year. The first event in 1978 was banned, and many of the participants were arrested.Their names were published in the local paper, and many lost their jobs. Homosexuality was not decriminalised in New South Wales until 1982.Today it is the largest cultural event in Australia, known throughout the world as the gayest street party of them all.
Democrat withdraws from Presidential race 4
10:25 AM — Democratic Congressman Dennis Kucinich announced yesterday he is dropping out of the 2008 Presidential race.Kucinich will make an official statement regarding his decision today. He also stated he will not endorse any candidates in the Democratic race.A former Mayor of Cleveland, he was elected to the US House of Representatives in 1996. Kucinich ran for the Presidential nomination in 2004.
Heath Ledger’s final hours revealed
10:20 AM — The facts around Heath Ledger's final hours continue to emerge while friends and family wait for the official cause of his death to be determined.As the details of Ledger's funeral arrangements continue to be worked out, Hollywood and the world mourns for the loss of the talented actor.Media reports spun across the Net since Ledger was found dead on Tuesday have been strewn with inaccuracies and wild speculation.
24th January 2008
Gay minister criticises Canada’s organ donation ban
2:50 PM — The Health Minister in the Canadian province of Ontario has said that new federal rules excluding sexually active gay men from being considered as organ donors if offensive.Men who have sex with men in the last five years of their life will no longer be accepted as organ donors under new rules from Health Canada.Families will also be interviewed about potential donors' exposure in increased risk.
Ledger’s death delays Presidential drug abuse statement
2:30 PM — US President George Bush has postponed a scheduled statement promoting a federal advertising campaign on the dangers of prescription drug abuse.White House press secretary Dana Perino confirmed that the decision was taken in light of the death of actor Heath Ledger.It is still unclear what caused the death of the 28-year-old Brokeback Mountain star, but prescription drugs are suspected to have played a role.
Former US Vice President backs gay marriage 3
10:50 AM — Al Gore has spoken in favour of marriage for gay and lesbian couples.The former Vice President of the United States, who was narrowly and controversially defeated by George W Bush in the 2000 Presidential election, came out in favour of equal rights in a video clip posted on current TV, a cable and online station he co-founded."I think it's wrong for the government to discriminate against people because of a person's sexual orientation," he said.
23rd January 2008
Charges considered over teen water polo photos 11
8:30 PM — Prosecutors in Orange County, California are investigating whether they can bring any charges against a university employee who took pictures of teenage water polo players and then posted them on gay porn sites.The man, reported to be a police dispatcher at the University of California Irvine, is not under formal investigation.As the photos were taken at public sporting events, he may be protected by the First Amendment of the US Constitution.
Heath Ledger autopsy inconclusive
8:30 PM — The New York City Medical Examiner's office is reporting that preliminary autopsy results have been inconclusive on actor Heath Ledger, who was found dead in his New York apartment on Tuesday surrounded by sleeping pills.According to FOX News, a spokeswoman for the office, Ellen Borakove, said yesterday that it will take about ten days to complete the investigation.The 28-year-old Australia-born actor's ex-fiancée, Academy Award-nominated actress Michelle Williams, has travelled to New York.
Huckabee campaign in financial trouble
8:15 PM — US Presidential candidate Mike Huckabee has admitted that his campaign is running out of money, with some staff members leaving and others working without pay.Despite his strong showing in some of the initial primary races for the Republican nomination, the former Baptist minister has spoken frankly about his rapidly diminishing funds.Ahead of the key Florida primary next week, the candidate told an audience yesterday that he is running a "frugal" campaign.
God Hates Fags fanatics may picket Ledger funeral 59
3:50 PM — The Westboro Baptist Church has declared its intention to protest at the funeral of actor Heath Ledger, who died yesterday.The 28-year-old was best-known for his Oscar-nominated performance in gay-themed cowboy movie Brokeback Mountain. Although the cause of death is unknown, a drugs overdose is suspected. The Westboro Baptist Church, led by Fred Phelps, has generated publicity by protesting at the funerals of US service personnel.
Poland defiant over gay adoptions 6
2:40 PM — Following yesterday's ruling by the European Court of Human Rights that gay people are entitled to adopt, a leading member of the governing political party in Poland has said they will defy the ruling.The deputy speaker of the Parliament, Stefan Niesiolowski, is a member of the Citizen's Platform (PO)."The Court can go on and make a ruling, it still won't be enforced in Poland," he said.
Italian government faces confidence vote
1:01 PM — The fate of Romano Prodi's administration rests on the votes of Senators after one of the nine parties that form the coalition government withdrew.Yesterday he called on Parliament to back him after the Christian Democrats pulled out on Monday, leaving him two votes short of a Senate majority. He has been in government less than two years.The House of Deputies, where he retains a majority, will vote on a motion of no confidence today.
Oscar nomination for documentary about lesbian cop
11:30 AM — A short documentary feature that chronicles a landmark legal battle over same-sex partner entitlement to pension benefits has been nominated for an Academy Award.Cynthia Wade's moving 38-minute documentary film Freeheld focuses on New Jersey Police Lieutenant Laurel Hester's battle to transfer her pension to her domestic partner, Stacie Andree.The film was awarded a Special Jury Prize at the 2007 Sundance Film Festival and picked up eleven additional awards at film festivals in New York, Los Angeles, Boston, Seattle and Denver.
22nd January 2008
Actor withdraws from White House race
10:40 PM — A former star of hit TV show Law and Order has pulled out of the race for the Republican candidate for President of the United States after a string of poor showing in the primaries.Fred Thompson announced his decision earlier today and it is not known if he will back any of his opponents for the nomination. In 2004 he backed Senator John McCain."I have withdrawn my candidacy. I hope that my country and my party have benefited from our having made this effort," he said.