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September 22, 2014

Former president of France is back, saying he 'detests' the way equal marriage was brought in by Francois Hollande's government

Nicolas Sarkozy has claimed the new same-sex marriage law in France 'humiliates families'.

The former president of France has returned to politics, condemning several actions made by François Hollande's government.

The 59-year-old politician, currently on his third wife, said he 'detested' the way Hollande 'forced' through marriage equality.

'[The government is] humiliating families and humiliating people who love the family', he said, by introducing legislation allowing same-sex marriage.

September 19, 2014

From a a boogie-down in Bogota's biggest gay club to a Segway tour through the streets of Cartagena, here are some tips for enjoying two of Colombia's most popular destinations

When it comes to reputations Bogota - the capital of Colombia – used to be right up there with Bagdad, Mogadishu and Pyongyang as a holiday destination.

Bogota was as notorious for kidnappings as Ibiza still is for a night of debauched clubbing. Years of being the cocaine capital of the world had left the city as a no-go area for all but the brave or mad.

But times have changed and in the space of just a few years Bogota has turned itself around and it’s now one of the safer cities in Latin America.

September 18, 2014

New South Wales approved the bill a day after Victoria introduced similar legislation

New South Wales today became the second Australian state to introduce a bill that will clear historical gay sex convictions, a day after Victoria introduced similar legislation.

The Parliament of New South Wales approved the bill which will be debated later this year.

Bruce Notley-Smith, the gay Liberal MP for Coogee district, introduced the legislation a week after he announced his intention to do so.

September 12, 2014

Neil Peng has repeatedly accused the president of having a gay relationship with his closest aide

Taipei mayoral candidate Neil Peng again called on President Ma Ying-jeou to come out in an online Q&A session despite a pending libel suit against him.

The author and politician said the age of gay stigmatization was over and gay people were just like any other minority such as left-handed people.

He said, 'Today would we discriminate against left-handed people? We not only don't discriminate, we think of them as very valuable, for example [baseball player] Wei-Yin Chen.'

September 10, 2014

Activists are calling on the US to review its relationship with the African country

Human rights groups have condemned the passage of a bill in the Gambia that punishes acts of 'aggravated homosexuality' with life imprisonment.

The Gambian National Assembly passed the bill last month, which now awaits approval from outspoken anti-gay President Yahya Jammeh. The bill targets 'serial offenders' and people living with HIV/AIDS.

September 10, 2014

A total of seven cases are now vying for review by nation's highest court

The attorney generals of both Indiana and Wisconsin petitioned the US Supreme Court on Tuesday (9 September) to review appeals court rulings that struck down gay marriage bans in their states.

Plaintiffs in both cases agree with the request to have the cases heard by the nation's highest court.

The latest two states to make this request are competing with similar requests made in cases in several other states including Virginia, Utah and Oklahoma.

September 9, 2014

The bill targets 'serial offenders' and people with HIV

Gambia has passed a bill that imposes life sentences for 'aggravated homosexuality' in what is already one of the most homophobic countries in Africa.

Officials told AP on Monday that the bill was passed last month and gives life sentences to 'serial offenders,' people with HIV and those suspected of having sex with someone who is under 18, disabled or drugged.

Suspects who are parents or guardians of the other person or 'in authority over' him or her are also targeted by the bill.

September 6, 2014

'The status quo has not changed with today’s ruling'

J.B. Van Hollen, Wisconsin's attorney general, promises to take his battle against marriage equality to the US Supreme Court.

September 5, 2014

Ceremony to take place at a time when number of potential marriage equality cases that might go before the high court grows

Ruth Bader Ginsburg, an associate justice of the US Supreme Court, is set to perform yet another same-sex wedding ceremony this weekend - her fourth.

Ginsburg, 81, will be conducting the ceremony of her former law clerk, Danny Rubens, and his fiance Danny Grossman.

September 1, 2014

The Zimbabwean president made the comment while visiting China but left without a single yuan in aid or soft loans

Zimbabwean president Robert Mugabe has said he prefers aid from China because Beijing did not force Africa to 'embrace homosexuality' like the West.

'Whereas Europe and America, when they give little funding assistance to countries they always attach conditions,' he told a Chinese TV interviewer. 'And that is our objection.'

He continued, ‘We know they are negative because the approach of China is quite different from their own approach. As I said, they want to use aid to control. China uses aid to promote the African personality.’

September 1, 2014

In a 2012 speech to a far right group, Page called US Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens a 'homosexual sodomite'

The St. Louis area police officer suspended after a video was discovered of him disparaging multiple groups, including the LGBTI community, has retired.

Dan Page, a 35-year veteran of the St. Louis County Police Department, faced scrutiny after a televised encounter with CNN's out anchor Don Lemon.

August 30, 2014

A transgender refugee who tried and failed to gain asylum in several countries, has described New Zealand as a ‘paradise’ where her gender identity is accepted

A transgender woman has spoken about her happiness at finally being allowed to live in a country where her female identity is accepted.

Eliana Rubashkyn, 26, from Bogota, Colombia, was granted asylum in New Zealand, where her certificate of identification has her gender stated as ‘female’.

She has described New Zealand as a ‘paradise’.

Rubashkyn has spoken about the ordeals suffered as a refugee seeking entry into countries such as France, Norway and Finland. She was consistently rejected because of regulations on gender reassignment surgery.

August 27, 2014

Australia’s Shop Distributive and Allied Employees Union will be investigated by the Human Rights Commission over allegations that its leaders systematically exclude LGBTI people from leadership positions

Australia’s biggest union will be investigated over allegations of systematic discrimination against its gay and lesbian members attaining leadership positions after allegations were made at a Royal Commission into Trade Union Governance and Corruption.

A witness at the Royal Commission recently accused the leadership of the Shop Distributive and Allied Employees Union (SDA) of refusing to allow openly gay or lesbian people to become union shop stewards and openly gay Australian Human Rights Commissioner Tim Wilson has agreed to open an investigation into the union.

August 27, 2014

Berlin’s first openly gay mayor Klaus Wowereit has announced that he will quit in December after more than 13 years leading the city’s government

Berlin’s first openly gay mayor has announced that he will resign in December of this year, ending a 13 year stint in the city’s top job.

Klaus Wowereit’s reputation has taken a beating recently over a project to build a new airport for the German capital.

The Willy Brandt airport was scheduled to open in 2010. However construction costs on the project blew out to double and it is still not clear when the airport will be ready to open.

August 25, 2014

A new bill in California aims to ensure future birth certificates reflect the fact that modern families don’t always have one mother and one father

Following lawmakers in California ruling earlier this summer that same-sex couples have the right to marry, steps are now being taken to simplify the way in which same-sex parents complete the birth certificates of their children.

At present, birth certificates in the US state have space for a ‘mother/parent’ name and a ‘father/parent’ name, forcing same-sex couples to add their names to these two fields regardless of their gender identity. A new bill will allow them the option of stating their relationship to the child: ‘father’, ‘mother’ or, simply, ‘parent’.

August 22, 2014

US Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit in Chicago has set oral arguments for August 26

The next big legal stage in the fight for marriage equality in the US has been set.

On Tuesday (26 August), the US Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit in Chicago will hear oral arguments in gay marriage cases from Wisconsin and Indiana.

The Seventh Circuit's jurisdiction also includes Illinois where same-sex marriage is already legal.

The circuit courts are the final stop before the US Supreme Court which may or may not choose to hear any of the cases recently decided.

August 21, 2014

Xavier Bettel, the third openly gay leader of a country, has announced that his architect civil partner Gauthier Destenay has proposed to him and he said yes

Luxembourg’s Prime Minister Xavier Bettel has announced he will soon take advantage of his country’s legalization of same-sex marriage after his civil partner Gauthier Destenay proposed to him.

Bettel and Destenay have been in a civil partnership since March of 2010 and same-sex marriage was legalized in Luxembourg in June of this year under his watch as leader of the government.

However it is only now that the couple are looking to make use of the law.

‘He asked me, and I said yes,’ the 41-year-old prime minister told a reporter from the LA Times.

August 20, 2014

Mariela Castro, a member of Cuba’s National Assembly and daughter of President Raul Castro, cast a ‘no’ vote in protest over a new labor code that protects sexual minorities but not transgender people or people with HIV from discrimination

Outspoken Cuban LGBTI rights advocate Mariela Castro has cast a historic ‘no’ vote in Cuba’s National Assembly which experts believe is the first time a dissenting vote has been recorded in the chamber since the Cuban Revolution of 1959.

Mariela, who is the daughter of Cuban President Raul Castro and the niece of revolutionary leader Fidel Castro, cast the vote in December of last year in protest at a new labor code that protects sexual minorities but not transgender people or people with HIV from workplace discrimination.

August 13, 2014

A pink LGBTI pride sequined ‘B’ in giant letters forming the word ‘Brisbane’ will greet Russian President Vladimir Putin when he touches down in the city for the G20 summit in November this year

The state government of Queensland, Australia wants to send a message about LGBTI tolerance and diversity to Russian President Vladimir Putin when he arrives in the state capital of Brisbane for this year’s G20 summit.

Earlier today Queensland Premier Campbell Newman, a prominent supporter of same-sex marriage in the Liberal-National Coalition, told a press conference in Brisbane that the city’s name would be spelled out in three metre tall (around 10 foot) letters during the G20, with the B reserved for a message about the importance of diversity.

August 6, 2014

Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals in Ohio will rule on cases in Ohio, Michigan, Kentucky and Tennessee

A three-judge panel of the US Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals in Cincinnati heard oral arguments Wednesday (6 August) in six cases challenges gay marriage bans in four different states.

The judges will be deciding whether to uphold rulings by various federal judges in lower courts who ruled that the marriage bans in Michigan, Tennessee, Kentucky and Ohio are unconstitutional.

The Court heard the Michigan case first, followed by two Ohio cases, then two Kentucky cases, and finally the Tennessee case.

Rulings are not expected for a few more weeks.

July 30, 2014

With other elected officials out of the state for the day, lesbian House Speaker Toni Atkins takes the reigns

California's Assembly Speaker Toni Atkins got to make some history Wednesday (30 July).

With the state's governor, lieutenant governor and state Senate president pro tem all out of the state for part of the day, Atkins briefly became the first openly gay person to be acting governor.

July 30, 2014

Court to hear six challenges to laws banning marriage equality in Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio and Tennessee next week

The fight for marriage equality in the US will have a historic day next week (6 August) when a federal appeals court will hear oral arguments in six different cases from four states.

Judges for the US Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit, located in Ohio, is considering challenges to gay marriage bans in Kentucky (two cases), Michigan, Ohio (two cases), and Tennessee.

It will mark the fourth argument heard by a federal circuit court since the US Supreme Court’s decision last summer which struck down key provisions of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA).

July 10, 2014

US Supreme Court Samuel A. Alito, Jr. offers no comment in his denial of Clerk Theresa Santai-Gaffney's appeal

A Pennsylvania county clerk will not get a chance to defend the state's same-sex ban to the Supreme Court.

According to SCOTUSblog, on 9 July Supreme Court Justice Samuel A. Alito, Jr. denied, without comment, Theresa Santai-Gaffney's appeal of a lower court's ruling.

The judge's rejection seems to be the clerk's final legal option.

July 7, 2014

Do you dream of Turkey's cool buildings, amazing beaches and hot oil wrestling? The country voted as the world’s most popular destination by TripAdvisor readers is changing its visa entry rules starting 1 January 2015

This year Turkey’s largest city and cultural heart Istanbul was voted as the top travel destination in the world by TripAdvisor users.

The reasons are hardly surprising.

Turkey is just one of those places that has everything.

Amazing food bazaars, stunning architecture like the Hagia Sophia, natural attractions like beaches and mud baths…