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World

  • 20th February 2007

    Hundreds of couples register in NJ

    Campaigners for gay marriage intend to sue, claiming that a civil union will not afford the same rights as marriage.

    5:48 PM — Yesterday in New Jersey hundreds of gay couples were given the same rights as married straight couples, and hundreds have joined in civil unions in the first 24 hours.Civil unions offer the same legal advantages as marriage, but not the title, and were given automatically to any same-sex couple who had already been married or joined in civil unions elsewhere.Couples who had not been joined previously could apply for the licence.

  • Thai Spice girls preach transsexual power 1

    Thai people are often more tolerant of trangender people than other countries.

    5:04 PM — A girl band of transsexuals who model themselves on the Spice Girls are hoping to change social attitudes and achieve pop chart success in Thailand.Venus Flytrap's five members were all born males and later underwent gender reassignment surgery.Like the famous British group, they have onstage personas, namely Cool Venus, Naughty Venus, Posh Venus, Sweet Venus and Hot Venus.

  • Irish parliament to debate civil unions 3

    The Dáil will vote tomorrow night on whether the legislation can move forward to the second stage.

    4:47 PM — Pro-gay politicians in Ireland have said they are hopeful that new legislation granting gay and lesbian couples the right to a civil marriage will gain the approval of MPs.The opposition Labour party are introducing a bill into the country's parliament, the Dáil, tonight.The party's justice spokesman, Brendan Howlin, has revealed that government MPs have been positive about the legislation.

  • US considered weapon to turn enemy gay 3

    A recruitment crisis has forced the Army and others to lower their standards.

    4:14 PM — A spokesperson for the US Department of Defence has confirmed a report that Air Force officials proposed developing a gay conversion chemical weapon in 1994.The proposal, part of a plan from Wright Air Force Base in Dayton, Ohio, was to develop "chemicals that effect (sic) human behaviour so that discipline and morale in enemy units is adversely effected (sic).

  • No miracle cure for AIDS, say doctors 1

    There are 4.3 million new infections of HIV every year around the world, but that 1 in 4 people do not realise they are infected.

    12:36 PM — American experts believe that although the elimination of AIDS seems unlikely, over a long period of time it is possible to work towards a lower rate of infection.Speaking at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science last weekend, Dr. Anthony Fauci said that the disease cannot just be "shut off" because it is transmitted by sexual activity, which is an essential part of human nature.

  • Transsexual MP stands down

    Beyer has served in the post of MP for Wairarapa since 1999, campaigning for the rights of LGBT people.

    11:31 AM — Georgina Beyer, the first transsexual MP to be elected in New Zealand, has retired from her post.Beyer is also a Maori, and so a minority in more ways than one. Over the past seven years she has made history for transgender people.Not only was she the first transsexual in the world to be elected to national office, she was also the first transsexual in the world to be elected as a mayor.

  • Lesbian couple arrested for non-violent protest

    Dotti Berry and Robynne Sapp of Blaine, Washington, entered the evangelical organisation's headquarters in Colorado to join a regularly scheduled tour.

    10:50 AM — Two women were removed by police yesterday from the headquarters of American Christian pressure group Focus on the Family as part of a non-violent gay rights protest.Dotti Berry and Robynne Sapp of Blaine, Washington, entered the evangelical organisation's headquarters in Colorado to join a regularly scheduled tour.Once inside, the two women requested a meeting with James Dobson, who heads Focus on the Family.

  • 19th February 2007

    Prodi conciliatory as Pope attacks again 2

    Church-state relations remain frosty following Pope Benedict XVI's latest attack on the proposed legislation to recognise gay couples.

    5:13 PM — The Italian Prime Minister Romano Prodi has promised to repair the relationship between his government and the Vatican after a fall-out over proposals to afford legal rights to same-sex partners.Prodi will meet today with Cardinal Tarcisio, Pope Benedict XVI's chief aide, and Cardinal Camillio Ruini, head of the Italian Bishops conference, to discuss church-state relations, the International Herald Tribune has reported.Church-state relations remain frosty following Pope Benedict XVI's latest attack on the proposed legislation to recognise gay couples.

  • Pioneering lesbian activist Gittings dies

    Gittings was a familiar activist in the early days of the gay rights movement in America photo: www.glbthistorymonth.com

    3:53 PM — An iconic figure in the American gay rights movement, Barbara Gittings, has died aged 74.Gittings helped found the New York chapter of lesbian rights organisation Daughters of Bilitis in 1958, and was one of the first openly gay women to gain media attention.She was also instrumental in persuading the American Psychiatric Association to stop viewing homosexuality as a mental disorder in the 1970s.

  • Trans tennis star looks back at life in public eye 3

    Prior to her sex-change, Renne, then Richard Raskind, went to Yale University and played tennis, captaining the men's team in 1954.

    2:44 PM — Renne Richards, a former tennis player and one of the world's most famous transsexual athletes, has admitted that she regrets the fame that she attracted.Richards made a life-changing decision in 1975 to undergo gender reassignment surgery.Talking to Reuters, she said it was the events that followed her operation that had the biggest impact on her lifestyle.

  • Report shows grim gay existence in Nigeria

    Simply taking part in a gay or lesbian club or support group would be illegal. photo: zouzouwizman@flickr.com

    12:06 PM — Nigerian LGBT people opposed to a new anti-gay law in the country have spoken about their experiences in a report for the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission (IGLHRC).Voices from Nigeria details homophobic attacks, arbitrary arrests and detentions, and increased levels of homophobia that have already begun as a result of the introduction of the legislation, referred to as the Same-Sex Marriage Prohibition Act.The Act launches a vigorous attack on freedom of expression.

  • New Jersey grants civil unions from today

    Currently Massachusetts is the only US state to marry same-sex couples but civil unions are legal in Vermont and Connecticut.

    11:28 AM — The American state of New Jersey has become the fifth state in the nation to grant marriage rights to same-sex couples.A new law, which was enforced across the state today, allows gay and lesbian couples to apply for a civil union and benefit from the same legal protection that heterosexual couples enjoy.However, the new unions are not identified as a marriage.

  • 17th February 2007

    African archbishops refuse to take communion 1

    The ordination of Gene Robinson is just one issue of difference

    4:42 PM — Seven archbishops who claim to represent more than 30 million Anglicans have refused to take Communion with Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori, the presiding head of the American Episcopal Church in protest of her support of gay clergy (including Gene Robinson- pictured)and gay unions.In a statement released at the Anglican conference in Dar Es Salaam, the archbishops said: "We each take the celebration of the Holy Eucharist very seriously."

  • 16th February 2007

    Jamaican mob terrorise gays 28

    International human rights organisations have described Jamaica as one of the most homophobic places in the world.

    3:14 PM — Three gay men were stoned by a huge mob in a homophobic attack in Jamaica this Wednesday.Police came to rescue the men from a pharmacy in Saint Andrew Parish, where they had been hiding for almost an hour.An angry crowd had gathered outside the pharmacy, hurling insults and threatening to kill the men.

  • Gay Iraqis face continued persecution 1

    Sectarian blackmail, mutilation, and assassination of gays are rife.

    3:02 PM — The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) has promised to crack down on the persecution of gay people in Iraq.The slaughter of gay Iraqis by Islamist death squads is yet another tragic consequence of the chaos and carnage in this beleaguered country.It would seem that no-one is safe from fundamentalist militias, who target Iraqis for "crimes against Islam," which might include drinking alcohol, having a Sunni name, or not being veiled if you are a woman.

  • Malta transsexual given permission to marry 2

    Malta is one of the most socially conservative countries in the EU. 98% of the population are Roman Catholics.

    10:07 AM — A judge in Malta has ordered government officials to issue the appropriate documentation to permit a transsexual woman to get married.The court's ruling is the first of its kind in the country, which joined the EU in 2004.The decision, taken yesterday, confirmed that as the woman had undergone gender reassignment surgery, her birth certificate should be changed to reflect her sex as legally female.

  • Anglican church steps back from schism 3

    The primates are now discussing what further steps they would like the American church to take, especially on the contentious issue of blessing gay partnerships.

    9:46 AM — After days of discussions, the primates of the Anglican church seem to have avoided a split over gay issues.The Archbishop of Canterbury, Rowan Williams, was one of the authors of a report handed to the conference of senior church representative in Tanzania yesterday that said the American church was complying with instructions not to install any more gay bishops.Gay Anglicans welcomed the findings.

  • 15th February 2007

    80% of Italians defy Vatican over partnership rights 4

    The poll results will be a blow for the Vatican.

    5:24 PM — A poll has revealed that an overwhelming majority of Italians approve of the government's proposed legislation that will grant some rights to unmarried couples.Last week the Cabinet unanimously approved the new legislation, which also grants rights to unmarried heterosexual couples.Now a survey for newspaper La Repubblica has found strong support for the measures.

  • NBA drops homophobic player 2

    He moved to the US to play high school basketball and went on to play for professional teams in America, France, Germany, Greece and England.

    5:23 PM — The retired basketball star who told the world that he "hates gay people" has been suspended from appearing at any National Basketball Association events.The homophobic remarks by Tim Hardaway have been widely reported in the United States, and follow last week's decision by another retired player, Brit John Amaechi, to come out of the closet.Hardaway's comments were made during a radio interview.

  • Gay basketball star exposes the game’s homophobia 3

    He emphasised his new mission is to send the message to gay athletes in all sports that coming out is the right thing to do.

    3:11 PM — John Amaechi, the former NBA basketball player who disclosed his homosexuality last week, has been receiving threatening e-mails since making the announcement.Currently promoting his autobiography <>IMan in the Middle in the United States, Amaechi said the kind of e-mails he was sent would "make you sick."The British-born 36-year-old has been asked by American gay activists Human Rights Campaign be to their spokesman for their "Coming Out project."

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