LGBTI global news 24-7

November 18, 2014

The Gay Star Travel Expo returns to London over the weekend of January 17/18th to showcase the hottest gay destinations in 2015 – from the best cruises to the fiercest party islands

Now in its second year, the Gay Star Travel Expo is taking place over the weekend of 17/18th January 2015 at London’s Heaven nightclub. 

Showcasing the hottest destinations for gay travel in 2015, the expo hosts tourist boards and top travel brands ready to help you plan the best year of your life in travel.

Once you’ve discovered your trip(s) of a lifetime, stick around as the daytime expo transforms into a holiday-themed club night with competitions, giveaways and more – you could even win a mystery getaway!

November 26, 2014

Ceremony is Rio de Janeiro state's fifth such event since 2011

Rio de Janeiro married 160 LGBTI couples on Sunday (23 November) in what the state hailed as 'the largest collective same-sex civil wedding ceremony in the world.'

The event was the fifth mass gay wedding organized by state program Rio Without Homophobia and the state court, which have married a total 500 LGBTI couples.

'It is an affirmative action to call attention to all of the achievements and challenges in the area of civil and human rights of the LGBT community,' Cláudio Nascimento, coordinator of Rio Without Homophobia, told Agência Brasil.

November 26, 2014

But no marriages yet as ruling put on hold pending possible appeal

A federal judge struck down Arkansas' ban on gay marriage on Tuesday (25 November) then placed a stay on the ruling to give the state an opportunity to appeal.

The stay means no marriages can take place between same-sex couples - yet.

US District Judge Kristine Baker stated in her ruling that even though the state's 2004 ban was approved by voters, that 'does not immunize it from federal constitutional scrutiny.'

Baker ruled in a lawsuit filed by two same-sex couples who sued on the grounds that the ban was in violation of the US Constitution.

November 26, 2014

Killings are the militant group's first executions for alleged homosexuality

The Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) yesterday (25 November) stoned to death two allegedly gay men in Syria.

This is the first report of ISIS executing people for homosexuality.

'The IS today stoned to death a man that it said was gay,' said the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.

The 20-year-old was killed in Mayadeen city in the eastern province of Deir Ezzor, near the border with Iraq after ISIS allegedly found videos on his mobile phone showing him 'practising indecent acts with males.'

November 26, 2014

'Treating lesbians and gays as second-class citizens is following old education'

Jason Mraz on Monday (24 November) spoke up for LGBTI rights while on tour in conservative Korea.

During an interview on the popular JTBC News Room telecast, conversation turned to human rights.

'You openly support for same-sex marriage. What would you say to the opposites?,' asked leading news anchor Sohn Suk-hee.

'We're always evolving, ever-changing, growing, expanding, and to treat lesbians and gays... as second-class citizens, as non-equals, is following old education, is following old tradition,' Mraz said.

November 26, 2014

Dennis Hensley and Tom Goss experience  consumerism, long lines and most especially, gay drama

Black Friday, the big post-Thanksgiving shopping day in US, is the setting for high gay drama in a fun new short film by Tom Goss and Dennis Hensley.

Goss tells Gay Star News that he and Hensley came up with the idea while chatting over coffee and pie about the ridiculousness of relationships and Black Friday consumerism.

The short tells the story of Chad (Hensley) and Claudio (Goss) who meet while waiting in line for Black Friday doorbuster deals.

Lust, love and heartbreak quickly - very quickly - ensue.

November 26, 2014

The United States Department of State has expressed its dismay that The Gambia has moved forward with a bill that punishes ‘aggravated homosexuality’ with life imprisonment and reports that security forces are actively hunting down LGBTI people

The United States Government has issued its strongest warning to date to the Government of The Gambia over its persecution of LGBTI people, with the Department of State issuing an official warning over the issue.

‘We are dismayed by President Jammeh’s decision to sign into law legislation that further restricts the rights of LGBT individuals and are deeply concerned about the reported arrests and detention of suspected LGBT individuals in The Gambia,’ State Department Bureau of Public Affairs director Jeff Rathke said in a statement on Monday.

November 26, 2014

'The court concludes that Mississippi’s same-sex marriage ban deprives same-sex couples and their children of equal dignity under the law'

Another barrier has been swept away. At least for now.

Today, 25 November, US District Court Judge Carlton W. Reeves ruled against Mississippi's amendment banning same-sex marriage.

November 25, 2014

Openly gay Emmerdale actress on loving California and the Lake District

She recently won Entertainer of the Year at the Stonewall Awards, for her role as Ruby Haswell in Emmerdale. And here the out and proud Alicya Eyo – who also made her directing debut last year with the queer short Brace – shares her travel tales, from experiencing discrimination in Egypt to the gay rite of passage which is San Francisco...

November 25, 2014

Actress calls him her 'favorite person in the world'

Amanda Bynes has said her rumored boyfriend is not gay as they've had sex.

The 28-year-old actress said she was engaged to a 19-year-old called Caleb Pusey in October, a teen she met in rehab. It is believed they lived together for a short while in California.

When he denied the suggestion on his social media, Bynes then accused him of being gay.

She has now retracted this, saying on Twitter: 'Caleb is not gay we had sex (sic).

'He did talk about being gay but we had sex so he obviously is not.'

November 25, 2014

Faith-based book equates homosexuality to 'pederasty' and 'bestiality'

Atlanta fire chief Kelvin Cochran has been suspended for a month without pay for distributing a self-published anti-gay book to his subordinates.

In the book Who Told You That You Were Naked, he identified himself as a 'devout Christian man' whose first priority as Atlanta Fire Department (AFD) chief was 'to cultivate its culture to the glory of God.'

One passage equates homosexuality to 'pederasty' and 'bestiality' and another describes gay sex as one of several 'vile, vulgar and inappropriate ways which defile their body-temple and dishonor God.'

November 25, 2014

A Facebook message has gone viral in Ireland and abroad, proving there are still wonderful people in the world

A gay man wandered into a Dublin store, dressed in a wooly sweater and short shorts.

When the man, who only wants to be identified as Colm, was called an anti-gay slur by another customer, the cashier then reacted in the best way possible.

This is a story that has gone viral in Ireland and now abroad.

Drag queen Panti Bliss shared the story, which reads in full:

November 25, 2014

Football Association in UK has groundbreaking trans policy

Britain’s Football Association has today thrown open the door for trans soccer players to be themselves on the pitch at every level in the game.

Most sports, including the International Olympic Committee, openly discriminate against or ban transgender athletes saying they are too masculine or feminine to play on either female or male teams.

But now the FA, long criticized for not doing enough to tackle LGBTI bigotry in soccer, has made a major breakthrough.

November 25, 2014

Grand jury does not charge police officer Darren Wilson for shooting the teen

LGBTI rights groups have condemned the lack of indictment in the fatal shooting of Michael Brown.

A St Louis grand jury has not charged police officer Darren Wilson for shooting the unarmed 18-year-old black man in Ferguson, Missouri three months ago.

The case sparked outrage in majority-black Ferguson and heightened longstanding tensions with the majority-white police force.

The National LGBTQ Task Force (NLTF) described the decision not to indict Wilson as 'shocking and painful for millions.'

November 25, 2014

EastEnders actor Nina Wadia will introduce the London Gay Symphony Orchestra’s first Family Concert this December

The London Gay Symphony Orchestra (LGSO) always throws an annual Christmas concert, but this year’s event will be a little different as it will be the company’s first ever Family Concert.

The concert will take place on Sunday 14 December at 5pm at St Sepulchre-without-Newgate on Holborn Viaduct in central London.

November 25, 2014

Place of worship will need to be 're-sanctified', clerics say

Two teen boys have been brutally beaten after allegedly having sex in a Ghana mosque.

The two 14-year-olds, who we have chosen to not name, were reportedly caught having sex in the religious building in the Brong Ahafo region last week.

Homosexuality is taboo in Ghana, punishable by up to three years in prison.

It is believed the two teens, a Christian and a Muslim, snuck into the mosque late at in the evening, started kissing, where they were stopped by an elderly man who was at prayer.

November 25, 2014

Policies include more devolution, pedestrianization and a Londoner's Card

Entrepreneur and gay rights activist Ivan Massow yesterday (24 November) launched his bid to be the next mayor of London in 2016.

Massow, 47, made a name for himself, and a fortune, in the early 1990s by setting up a specialist insurance company for gay men when others were penalizing them due to AIDS.

He is a long-serving Tory member although he briefly defected to Labour in protest of Section 28, which banned the 'promotion' of homosexuality in schools.

November 25, 2014

Stars John Lithgow and Alfred Molina as married couple pulled apart when one is fired from Catholic for being gay

The gay-themed drama Love is Strange received four Independent Spirit Award nominations today including one for Best Feature.

The film tells the story of Ben (John Lithgow) and George (Alfred Molina) who are finally able to get legally married in New York after nearly 40 years together.

But not long after their joyful wedding, George is fired from his job teaching music at a Catholic school. Someone at the school saw their wedding photos posted in Facebook.

November 25, 2014

The trio reportedly have steamy scene in upcoming film Michael

We already know that James Franco and Zachary Quinto play lovers in the upcoming feature film Michael.

What we did not know is that at one point, they take part in a steamy threesome scene with Teen Wolf star Max Carver.

November 25, 2014

Unlock the ancient, enigmatic glamour of the Turkish metropolis with our guide

Pushed and pulled by the eastern and western worlds for centuries, absorbing influences and attitudes from both Europe and the Middle East, Turkey is astoundingly resilient.

And Istanbul, with 14 million people, has been the cosmopolitan centre of the region since it was founded as Constantinople in 330 AD. The Bosphorus Strait, a shipping lane that links the Black Sea and the Marmara Sea dividing Istanbul in two, is one of the boundaries between Europe and Asia.

November 25, 2014

New research shows homosexuality helps humans bond

Scientists have found a possible reason why homosexuality exists and does not die out with evolution.

Same sex desire helps us bond with people of the same gender.

Those who argue that homosexuality is a choice often argue that traits which stop us breeding successfully are eventually filtered out by evolution.

Dr Diana Fleischman, of the University of Portsmouth, and her colleagues have released their answer to that question today (25 November).

November 25, 2014

'It's like wearing a toupee. It suggests that you’re not proud of who you are'

Hunger Games producer Nina Jacobson has been one of the highest-profile power players in the movie industry for more than two decades.

She's also an out and proud lesbian and has little respect for those who choose to remain in the closet.

'It’s a detriment to be closeted,' she tells The New York Times Magazine.

November 25, 2014

A video ad supporting LGBTI rights in Lithuania can only air after 11pm under the anti-gay law

Lithuania psychologists have claimed gay propaganda laws brought in to 'protect' children are actually harming them.

A social video ad about LGBTI rights on television was banned from airing before 11pm at night by broadcasters, saying it would violate the law 'protecting children'.

The Union of Lithuanian Psychologists have claimed censorship of this kind, seen in many countries including Russia, is what harms young people.

November 25, 2014

Jonathan Jesensky made 10 films, including one titled Paramedics, under stage name of Jonathan West

The former gay porn star known as Jonathan West has begun a new career as a firefighter with the New York Fire Department.

Jonathan Jesensky started as a rookie firefighter last week but had already been with the department as an EMT then a paramedic, according to the New York Daily News.

He is also a former US Marine who served a tour of duty on Iraq.