17th January 2008
Protesters halt Papal visit to university 1
10:50 AM — Science students and academics at the University of Rome La Sapienza have successfully stopped Pope Benedict XVI from visiting the campus today.Vatican Radio accused them of censorship, while the Italian Prime Minister said their determination to block the Pope from speaking "provoked an unacceptable tension and a climate that does not honour the traditions of civilisation and tolerance in Italy."LGBT students also planned to protest the Papal visit.
16th January 2008
Cameroon men get six months jail for being gay 7
6:35 PM — Three men have been sentenced to six month hard labour for being homosexual.The men were arrested in Bonapriso, Douala, on August 31st 2007 by police officers making random arrests in search of armed robbers.After being beaten at the police station, one of the men confessed to being homosexual and implicated his two colleagues.The three men's lawyer said she would appeal the convictions and none of the men had been found guilty of homosexual acts.
Toilet sex carries “expectation of privacy” says ACLU 1
5:14 PM — The American Civil Liberties Union yesterday filed court papers in support of US Senator Larry Craig's fight to have his conviction for soliciting sex in an airport toilet overturned.The ACLU brief cited a Minnesota Supreme Court ruling that people having sex in a closed toilet cubicle in a public toilet have an "expectation of privacy" and if the Senator was attempting to engage an undercover police officer for sex he was not acting illegally.The Senator from Idaho arrested on June 11th by an undercover police officer in a Minneapolis airport men's room.
Presbyterian church allows lesbian ordination
5:01 PM — In the first test of a new policy allowing local Presbyterian churches the right to welcome into the clergy candidates who object to church teachings, the Presbytery of San Francisco has granted a lesbian deacon her wish of becoming a minister.The regional body yesterday voted 167 to 151 in favour of Lisa Larges, who had twice before been denied ordination.Since 1978 the US Presbyterian denomination bans sexually active gay or lesbian people from the ministry.
Florida gay marriage ban short on signatures
2:02 PM — An initiative to ask Florida's citizens to ban gay marriage in the state is more than 20,000 signatures short of the required number, despite claims last month that the target had been reached.Florida4Marriage.org want a question on the 2008 ballot on following amendment to the state's constitution regarding civil marriage.Revised numbers show that the group is 21,989 signatures short of the required 611,009. There are two weeks left until the deadline.
Gay.com parent company up for sale
12:40 PM — Shares in one of the largest gay media companies in the world, PlanetOut, fell 23.4% yesterday to $4.75 (£2.42).A spokesman for the NASDAQ-listed company confirmed they are looking for potential buyers. It has been a rocky year for the company. It is now trading at 13% of its value in January 2007.In May high operating costs and declining sales resulted in a considerable first-quarter loss and a resulting slide in share price.
Aide to Latvian MP convicted of Pride attack
11:30 AM — A 32-year-old man who works as an aide to a homophobic Latvian MP has been convicted of "gross public disorderliness" during Riga Pride in 2006.Janis Dzelme is an assistant to the Latvia First Party MP Dainis Turlais.The court found that he has throw a bag of excrement at the car of a gay rights activist.
Morocco ‘gay party’ convictions upheld 1
10:55 AM — A leading human rights organisation has called on the authorities in Morocco to release six men jailed for "lewd and unnatural acts."They were arrested by police between November 23rd and 25th 2007, after a video circulated online, including on YouTube, purporting to show a private party, allegedly including the men, taking place in Ksar el-Kbir on November 18th.Press reports claimed the party was a "gay marriage." At an appeal yesterday the men's sentences were reduced but their convictions upheld.
Romney and Clinton win in Michigan
10:25 AM — Former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney has pulled off a strong win in the Michigan primary results, beating out his rivals, Arizona Senator John McCain and former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee.Although pre-voting polls had the two top Republican candidates at a virtual tie, Romney pulled off the win with a significant margin.Hillary Clinton, virtually uncontested, won in the Democratic primary.With 77 percent of precincts reporting in, Mitt Romney has been declared the projected winner in the Michigan Republican primary.
15th January 2008
Swedish opposition may force gay marriage vote 5
4:45 PM — The three opposition parties in Sweden have said they may force a bill through parliament to extend marriage to gay and lesbian couples.Under current laws, dating back to 1987, marriage is defined as being between a man and a woman.Gay and lesbian couple can register their partnership through a civil ceremony, a process introduced in 1995 which gives same-sex couples the same rights as married couples.
Banks woo gay recruits in Asia
4:00 PM — While multi-national corporations have been actively recruiting gay, lesbian and bisexual staff in the UK for some time, the policy has now been adopted in some Asian nations.The Financial Times reports that American investment bank Lehman Brothers held a recruietment event for LGB students at Hong Kong university and is considering similar events in Singapore.Homosexual relations are legal in Hong Kong. Despite recent debate about the issue in Singapore they remain against the law.
14th January 2008
Comment: Canada’s ban on gay organ donation 1
1:10 PM — As Prime Minister Gordon Brown announces plans to rapidly expand the organ donation scheme in the UK by effectively making everyone a donor unless they choose to opt out, Canadian health authorities are under fire for appearing to exclude sexually active gay men.Dr Gary A Levy, one of Canada's leading transplant experts speaks out against the policy which seeks to exclude donors on the grounds of their sexual orientation. As the Medical Director of Canada's largest multi-organ transplant programme, I see people when they are at their most vulnerable.
National poll puts Clinton and McCain in the lead
11:20 AM — New York Senator Hillary Clinton and Arizona Senator John McCain lead in a new national poll released on Friday by CNN/Opinion Research Group.Taken after the New Hampshire primary, is shows McCain with 34 percent of registered Republicans.On the Democratic side, Clinton leads with a healthy percentage over Illinois Senator Barack Obama.
11th January 2008
Spanish party pledges to create “family” ministry
5:30 PM — The main opposition party in Spain has made a bid for conservative and Catholic votes by promising to establish a new "family" ministry if they win the elections in March.Addressing a rally in Toledo yesterday the leader of Partido Popular, Mariano Rajoy, suggested that the "traditional family" needs extra protection.The incumbent Socialist government has legalised same-sex marriage, eased divorce laws and repeatedly clashed with the Roman Catholic Church.
Researchers pinpoint human proteins HIV needs to survive 2
4:55 PM — Researchers at Harvard Medical school have discovered 273 of the human proteins that the HIV virus preys on to damage the body.Experts have always known the virus depended on human proteins to attack the body, but only knew what 36 of these proteins were before last Thursday.The new research was published online by the journal Science. Scientists used a type of genetic screen to discover these new human proteins, which the virus needs to survive in human cells.
Gay activists cleared by Russian court
4:30 PM — A group of LGBT rights campaigners arrested at a polling station in Russia during December's elections have been acquitted.More than two dozen activists came to vote at the polling station to protest against the electoral process and the homophobic stance of all political parties including President Vladimir Putin's United Russia.Mayor Luzhkov, the city's homophobic Mayor, headed the Moscow list for the party and cast his vote at the polling station an hour after the arrests.
Baby taken away from Brazilian gay couple 2
3:14 PM — A government official who successfully fought to take an adopted baby away from a gay couple in Brazil has said that "gay couples are abnormal."Last Monday 70 people gathered in San Jose do Rio Preto, a small town outside of Sao Paulo, to protest against the baby being removed from the care of a 30-year-old transsexual hairdresser, Roberta Góes Luiz, and her partner."I've been through three psychological evaluations successfully. I have my own home," Roberta told O Globo .
Comment: L Word highlights US military’s gay ban 2
2:39 PM — Actress Rose Rollins is speaking out about her The L Word character Tasha and the "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" storyline garnering national attention for her role.Playing a captain in the Army National Guard, Rollins' character is navigating the difficult choice many real LGB soldiers are facing in the US military — whether to stay in the closet or face being discharged and losing their careers.Although Tasha has developed a reputation as being the 'tough' girl on the show, her character is about far more than her exterior 'attitude'.
Gibraltar gays take age of consent fight to Europe 24
2:11 PM — Gibraltar's unequal age of consent and discriminatory sexual offences legislation have been taken to the Council of Ministers of the Council of Europe by gay rights group GGR.At present male homosexual sex is legal at 18, rather than 16 for heterosexual and lesbian sex.The Council of Ministers is the highest level of the European body which is responsible for overseeing human rights.Gibraltar is a self-governing overseas territory of the United Kingdom.
Gay mayor is Al-Qaeda target
12:50 PM — The Socialist mayor of Paris has been given increased police protection after US security services informed their French counterparts that he might be attacked by terrorists.While monitoring internet traffic related to Al-Qaeda the CIA discovered that Bertrand Delanoe was listed as a target.As mayor of France's biggest city, he is the most prominent gay politician in the country. A police spokesman confirmed that the mayor was being given more security.