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World

  • 22nd October 2007

    A new dawn for Poland as homophobes lose power 1

    Civic Platform are a conservative party, and they plan to halve the number of MPs and introduce a flat tax.

    12:01 PM — Poland will have a new Prime Minister after Jaroslaw Kaczynski and his Law and Justice party conceded defeat to Civic Platform.The League of Polish Families, a junior partner in the former coalition government and the most outspokenly homophobic party, did not meet the 5% threshold and now have no seats in Parliament.While in government League party leader Roman Giertych was deputy Prime Minister and Education Minister.

  • Interview: The inside story of gay life in the US Air Force 1

    the actor/reality show star/model/pilot/real estate agent/activist/spokesperson opens up about his new gig on Dante's Cove, the state of “Don't Ask, Don't Tell.“

    11:41 AM — No sooner did Reichen Lehmkuhl become an overnight symbol of success for the gay community when he and then partner Chip Arndt took home the million dollar prize on The Amazing Race than the tabloids turned on him.The picture of domesticity turned failed gay union, the reality show star turned wannabe actor/beefcake calendar pinup, the front burner romance with boy-bander Lance Bass that crumbled under a they said, Reichen said battle of accusations.

  • Rights group challenges New York schools over gay students

    Ithaca City School District not only contested the specific facts, but argued that the human rights law does not apply to public schools.

    11:31 AM — In an effort to persuade the Ithaca City School District to abandon its stance that the New York Human Rights Law does not apply to public schools, New York-based Lambda Legal today sent school board members a letter critiquing the board's argument and explaining the potential harm the board's position could cause."The human rights law is the only effective law that expressly addresses anti-gay discrimination in New York schools," Hayley Gorenberg, deputy legal director at Lambda Legal, said in a release. "Attacking it jeopardises LGBT students."

  • Scouts pay for ban on gays

    Previously the Boy Scouts of America's Cradle of Liberty Council paid $1 a year.

    10:10 AM — The Philadelphia chapter of the Boy Scouts of America is facing a heavy price, in the form of $200,000 (£97,680) in rent per year, for its National Council's stubborn stance against admitting gays.Previously the Boy Scouts of America's Cradle of Liberty Council paid $1 a year to locate its headquarters in a historic, city-owned building.According to reports in the Philadelphia Inquirer, city officials raised the amount charged to the organisation.

  • 21st October 2007

    Polish government headed for defeat

    Jaroslaw Kaczynski looks set to loose his grip on power

    10:49 PM — The Polish prime minister Jaroslaw Kaczynski, tonight faces defeat following snap parliamentary elections. Exit polls indicate that the right wing, homophobic Law and Justice (PiS) party looks set to lose power following official declarations likely to be held on Tuesday.Exit polls for the TVN24 news channel indicate that the Civil Platform party (PO) won 44 per cent of the popular vote with the Law and Justice Party taking just 31 per cent.

  • 19th October 2007

    Istanbul LGBT group trial to resume in January 5

    Government officials have made similar legal moves to shut down other lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender organisations in Turkey.

    4:51 PM — Efforts by Turkish officials to close one of the country's leading LGBT organisations will have to wait until next year as a judge has ordered that legal experts compile a report.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 breaches both the Penal Code and Article 41 of the Turkish constitution.

  • Bahamas police accused of harassing gay tourists 8

    Mr Xavier reported the incident to the US embassy and is now preparing to make his request to police.

    1:40 PM — A gay cruise-ship operator is demanding a public apology from the Royal Bahamas Police after they raided a party for LGBT tourists.DaJuan Xavier, Executive Director of Ebony Pyramid Entertainment, called the incident, which happened on Saturday October 6th at the Hard Rock Café in Nassau, an attempt "to harass, intimidate, and frighten."According to the Nassau Guardian, Mr Xavier reported the incident to the US embassy and is now preparing to make his request to police.

  • Singapore gay rights drive meets opposition 4

    The government has assured the local gay community that it would not actively prosecute them but gay rights advocates say that it is not enough.

    1:20 PM — A group calling itself "The Majority" has set up a website asking the government of Singapore to retain laws outlawing homosexual sex.An online letter to the country's Prime Minister asks him to "do what is right and retain Section 377A for the future of our children and our nation."Laws established during colonial times have held that same-sex relationships could be punishable by fines and jail time.

  • US study reveals prevalence of gay domestic abuse

    The study found that 32 percent of gay and bisexual men have been abused by their partners.

    12:15 PM — It may not be called spousal abuse because gay marriage is still not considered legal in most US states, but according to a new study in the Journal of Urban Health: Bulletin of The New York Academy of Medicine, gay men experience partner abuse at almost the same rate as women in heterosexual relationships.It's a little documented area of abuse, but this new study, which looks at victims of intimate partner violence, found that 32 percent of gay and bisexual men have been abused by their partners.

  • Dancing boys a mark of prestige in Afghanistan 4

    The practice of “bacha baazi“, meaning “boy-play“, is enjoying a resurgence in the North of Afghanistan.

    12:01 PM — Young boys are being sexually abused in Afghanistan in line with a tradition where they are bought by older men to dance at parties.The practice of "bacha baazi", meaning "boy-play", is enjoying a resurgence in the North of Afghanistan where ownership is seen as a status symbol by militia leaders according to Afghan news site, e-Ariana.While condemned by clerics and human rights groups, authorities are doing little to end it.

  • Gay workplace protection law moves forward 21

    87% of the top Fortune 500 companies in the US already provide protection from discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation.

    10:40 AM — A committee of the US House of Representatives yesterday approved the Employment Non-Discrimination Act.The proposed legislation, which covers gay, lesbian and bisexual but not trans people, will now to the floor of the House for a vote next week.The landmark Act was originally designed to protect the American LGBT community from workplace discrimination.

  • 18th October 2007

    Senator in cruising scandal denies he is bisexual 3

    Senator Craig denied that he had used foot and hand gestures to signal interest in a sexual encounter.

    5:55 PM — Larry Craig, the United States Senator who pleaded guilty to charges of cruising in an airport toilet, gave an hour-long TV interview last night in which he discussed the incident in detail.Appearing alongside his wife, the 62-year-old Republican politician was asked by NBC correspondent Matt Lauer: "Are you technically not a homosexual?"Is it possible you're bisexual?" The Senator replied: "It's no to both."

  • Homophobia turns young people off Christianity 3

    75% of young non-Christians thought that present-day Christians are too involved in politics - half of young Christians agreed.

    2:50 PM — Research into the declining respect for Christianity among young people has identitfied religious hostility to LGBT people as a major factor.An investigation by The Barna Group, an evangelical market research company, into the attitudes of Americans aged 16 to 29, makes grim reading for religious leaders.91% of young non-Christians and 80% of young churchgoers said "anti-homosexual" describes Christianity.

  • US military recruited on gay website 1

    The US military has discharged over 11,000 personnel for being gay or lesbian since 1993.

    12:10 PM — The American Armed Forces placed job adverts on a gay networking site despite the fact that people who are openly gay, bisexual or lesbian are banned from serving.A spokesman for the Army National Guard told USA Today he was unaware of the adverts running on GLEE.comThe Navy has ordered that 8,000 ads be removed from the site. The Marine Corps claimed that only civilian jobs, not covered by the "Don't Ask Don't Tell" policy were advertised.

  • The gay hate church and the Presidential candidate

    Thompson considers the church to be “a radical fringe group, looking to draw attention to themselves.“

    10:41 AM — Members of the Westboro Baptist Church in Topeka, Kansas have sent a letter to Republican Presidential candidate Fred Thompson in the hopes he will support their stance against the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community.In the letter, released to the press earlier this week, the church said, "We know what your position used to be on the homosexual question - and it was wonderful and we saw eye to eye."

  • 17th October 2007

    Activists welcome moves to restore trans rights to ENDA 3

    Representative Tammy Baldwin announced today that she has secured an agreement from the Democratic leadership.

    6:10 PM — The only openly lesbian Congresswoman has said that trans protections will be re-introduced to the Employment Non-Discrimination Act currently before the US Congress.Representative Tammy Baldwin announced today that she has secured an agreement from the Democratic leadership to introduce an amendment on the floor of the House of Representatives next week, after the bill protecting gay, lesbian and bisexual people at work moves through the House Education and Labour Committee tomorrow.

  • Turkish authorities try to close gay group 5

    Lambda Istanbul's charter defines its main aim is to support all lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people to adopt equality as a value.

    4:15 PM — An attempt by the Governor's Office of Istanbul to close down Lambda Istanbul, an LGBT group, has raised questions about human rights in Turkey.A department responsible for non-governmental organisations alleges that the group violates Turkish laws on morality.The Governor had asked in early 2007 that the group be shut down.In July local prosecutors rejected the complaint but the Governor's Office then took the case to a higher court which heard the case in July 2007 and ordered a second hearing which begins tomorrow.

  • PM pledges action on Gibraltar age of consent 24

    “The Prime Minister has agreed to take this matter up to ensure that steps are taken to end this discriminatory practice.“

    3:22 PM — The Prime Minister has committed himself to ending the unequal age of consent in the British self-governing territory of Gibraltar.MEP Michael Cashman met with Gordon Brown yesterday and raised the issue with him.LGBT people in the territory have little legal protection from discrimination. Up until 1992, all male homosexual relationships were illegal. At present male homosexual sex is legal at 18, rather than 16 for heterosexual and lesbian sex.

  • Moldovan church leader attacks gay equality

    Around 20 activists attempted to march for gay rights in the Moldovan capital Chisinau last May. photo: dittaeva@flickr.com

    3:05 PM — The Metropolitan of Chisinau and All Moldova, has attacked gay marriage at a theological conference of globalisation challenges held in the country.He said that equality between same-sex marriage and heterosexual marriage is contrary to "Christian convictions."The Metropolitan also expressed his conviction that politicians should be loyal to their faith above all other considerations.

  • Comment: The complexities of lesbian life in rural Texas

    Small circles of friends can be a wonderful blessing. For lesbians who live in the country, away from any community support, even more so. photo: Patrick Denker@flickr.com

    1:15 PM — Sometimes I find it difficult to even relate to lesbians who live in well populated metropolitan areas.I live in a very rural area of east Texas, where there is no lesbian or gay public presence to speak of. If you want to go to a pride parade, you can drive 130 miles to Dallas and catch one.If you want to go to a lesbian bar - same drive. There is one gay bar only 60 miles away, but it's predominantly for gay men.

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