International day of action brings hope
While the Hall of Shame unveiled today Human Rights Watch shows that there is a long way to go to achieve gay equality.
However, there are also large and small gains that give reason for hope on the International Day Against Homophobia.
In Nepal, after years of abuse directed at lesbians, gays, and transgender people during a violent civil war, the authorities in February gave a meti (transgender person) in February an official citizenship ID with a gender listed as neither male nor female.
This was first time that a government in South Asia has given transgender identity full state recognition.
In Denmark, Parliament in June extended equal access to reproductive technologies to lesbians and single women.
In 1989 Denmark became the first country in the world to create civil unions for same-sex partners, but such unions have still discriminated against same-sex couples in many areas, including reproduction.
The Danish decision marked a recognition of women’s equal worth as parents, and a further step toward full equality.
In Mexico, Mexico City and the northeastern state of Coahuila passed civil-union laws opening recognition to same-sex couples.
Unions performed in Coahuila must be recognised as valid across Mexico.
These moves come after the 2003 passage of a sweeping federal antidiscrimination law offering protection against unequal treatment based on sexual orientation.
Internationally, the Yogyakarta Principles on the Application of International Law in Relation to Issues of Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity were launched during the March session of the United Nations Human Rights Council.
Adopted in November at a meeting of international legal experts in the Indonesian city of Yogyakarta, these groundbreaking principles spell out the international legal standards under which governments and other actors should end violence, abuse and discrimination against lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people, and ensure full equality.