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April 3, 2015

Who's up for a railway romance?

There are few forms of travel that evoke the romance and adventure of the railway.

Conjuring nostalgia for travel’s golden era, an epic train trip not only gives you the chance to just relax and enjoy the view, the view itself can give you special insight into a country you’d never get by sticking to the roads. In some more perilous areas, rail travel is the only option.

Here, Asia specialists Backyard Travel lead us on a tour through three of Asia’s most thrilling train trips.

February 14, 2015

The couple said their wedding vows and exchanged rings onboard a Vietjet flight on Valentine's Day, according to an advertorial on a local news website

Lesbian couple Tang Ai Linh and her partner Pham Thi Thanh Phuong celebrated their wedding onboard a Vietjet flight today – Valentine's Day – from Ho Chi Minh City to Bangkok, Thailand.

January 30, 2015

Survey finds coming out to family remains difficult

Nearly 80% of LGBTI Vietnamese say society had changed positively toward them over the last five years, according to a new survey.

The survey released Tuesday (27 January) found that 44% of respondents had witnessed 'much' positive change from 2009 to 2013.

The most voted changes were confidence to be themselves, government recognition and LGBTI activities.

ICS Center surveyed 3,214 LGBTI Vietnamese citizens aged 16 and above in online forums between July and August 2014
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January 26, 2015

Ringleader owns the Vietnamese edition of UK publication Attitude

Vietnamese police Friday (23 January) arrested a gay magazine owner in Ho Chi Minh City for running an online gambling ring worth 1 trillion Vietnamese dong ($46.88m).

Nine others were arrested in connection to the Philippines-based website 12bet.com.

To Cong Hung, 33, allegedly managed operations in the south east Asian country for several months and is also the owner of the Vietnamese edition of Attitude, the leading gay magazine in the UK.

January 26, 2015

Ringleader owns the Vietnamese edition of UK publication Attitude

Vietnamese police Friday (23 January) arrested a gay magazine owner in Ho Chi Minh City for running an online gambling ring worth 1 trillion Vietnamese dong ($46.88m).

Nine others were arrested in connection to the Philippines-based website 12bet.com.

To Cong Hung, 33, allegedly managed operations in the south east Asian country for several months and is also the owner of the Vietnamese edition of Attitude, the leading gay magazine in the UK.

December 26, 2014

Distributors announce additional screenings in Ho Chi Minh City until Dec 28, screenings in Hanoi from Dec 29 to Jan 1

Described by a local newspaper as a 'respectful, true, and positive perspective on the LGBT community' in Vietnam, the 86-min documentary has had 16 screenings between Dec 13 and 21, and distributors have added another 12 from Dec 22 to 28.

December 15, 2014

See the best photos of the event inside

Hundreds of people on Saturday (13 December) celebrated sexual and gender diversity in Ho Chi Minh City.

About 1,000 LGBTI individuals and their allies gathered at the Labor Culture Palace in Saigon district for the Embrace Diversity Festival.

The annual event is organized by the ICS Center with the support of the Canadian embassy and also honors individuals and organizations that have made outstanding contributions to the community in the last year.

December 15, 2014

See the best photos of the event inside

Hundreds of people on Saturday (13 December) celebrated sexual and gender diversity in Ho Chi Minh City.

About 1,000 LGBTI individuals and their allies gathered at the Labor Culture Palace in Saigon district for the Embrace Diversity Festival.

The annual event is organized by the ICS Center with the support of the Canadian embassy and also honors individuals and organizations that have made outstanding contributions to the community in the last year.

November 19, 2014

US embassy in Hanoi hosts an annual LGBTI music festival 

Ted Osius on Monday (17 November) was confirmed as the US ambassador to Vietnam, making him the seventh LGBTI ambassador to be appointed during the Obama administration.

President Obama nominated the former career diplomat in May.

Osius served in Asia for most of his 25 years in the foreign service - in Indonesia, India, Thailand, the Philippines and Vietnam - and was most recently a professor at the National War College.

November 19, 2014

US embassy in Hanoi hosts an annual LGBTI music festival 

Ted Osius on Monday (17 November) was confirmed as the US ambassador to Vietnam, making him the seventh LGBTI ambassador to be appointed during the Obama administration.

President Obama nominated the former career diplomat in May.

Osius served in Asia for most of his 25 years in the foreign service - in Indonesia, India, Thailand, the Philippines and Vietnam - and was most recently a professor at the National War College.

August 1, 2014

Hospitals in the country look likely to perform surrogacy services from 2015 – but under strict rules and regulations that prohibit gay couples from applying

Vietnam’s Ministry of Health has announced plans for a small number of Vietnamese hospitals to perform surrogacy services – but for married heterosexual couples only. The policy echoes a recent clampdown by the Indian Government on its country’s surrogacy services – outlawing surrogacy for same-sex couples from India or abroad.

May 27, 2014

A 20-year-old man and his 23-year-old girlfriend have been arrested in Ho Chi Minh City over their roles in allegedly dismembered his 30-year-old abusive gay lover

A 30-year-old gay man has been murdered and dismembered in Ho Chi Minh City but his killer and acomplice claim he was killed so his ex-lover could escape an abusive relationship.

Vietnamese police say Tran Nhat Duy, 20, admitted to killing and dismembering 30-year-old Van Anh Tuan but he claims Tuan had threatened to kill him if he ended their relationship.

Duy began a relationship with Tuan when he was in year 11 in high school in the Mekong Delta province of Tien Giang.

May 27, 2014

A 20-year-old man and his 23-year-old girlfriend have been arrested in Ho Chi Minh City over their roles in allegedly dismembered his 30-year-old abusive gay lover

A 30-year-old gay man has been murdered and dismembered in Ho Chi Minh City but his killer and acomplice claim he was killed so his ex-lover could escape an abusive relationship.

Vietnamese police say Tran Nhat Duy, 20, admitted to killing and dismembering 30-year-old Van Anh Tuan but he claims Tuan had threatened to kill him if he ended their relationship.

Duy began a relationship with Tuan when he was in year 11 in high school in the Mekong Delta province of Tien Giang.

May 21, 2013

Gay Vietnamese-Canadian fashion design lecturer who lives in Ho Chi Minh City argues Vietnam is not ready for gay marriage

In response to Vietnam marching ahead of other Asian nations towards legalizing same-sex marriage, a gay Vietnamese-Canadian fashion design lecturer who lives in Ho Chi Minh City said that the country is not ready for marriage equality.

Legalizing gay marriage would not make Vietnam '"cool" when it has failed to acknowledge other gay rights issues', Valentine Vu writes in an editorial for Tuoitre News.

April 19, 2013

Huong Giang wears dress made of 2,000 condoms as part of publicity campaign funded by USAID

Transgender Vietnam Idol finalist Huong Giang is the latest celebrity to wear a dress made of 2,000 condoms for a safe sex campaign.

Giang told Tuoitre News Vietnam she is happy for her name to be associated with condom-use and wants to send the public, particularly young people, a message about safe sex.

April 19, 2013

Huong Giang wears dress made of 2,000 condoms as part of publicity campaign funded by USAID

Transgender Vietnam Idol finalist Huong Giang is the latest celebrity to wear a dress made of 2,000 condoms for a safe sex campaign.

Giang told Tuoitre News Vietnam she is happy for her name to be associated with condom-use and wants to send the public, particularly young people, a message about safe sex.

December 27, 2012

Two men arrested for murder of 26-year-old in southern Dong Nai province, in a suspected money dispute

Two men have been arrested for the murder of a gay man in Vietnam who was reportedly killed and chopped into pieces.

According to the country's Tuổi Trẻ newspaper, 23-year-old Tran Tu Dien, of Bac Lieu province, and Ngo Van Tam, 20, of Tra Vinh province, were arrested by police in southern Dong Nai province yesterday (26 December).

December 5, 2012

Government draws up action plan to tackle male prostitution in cities including Ho Chi Minh City and Da Nang

Gay male prostitution is on the increase in several cities across Vietnam, according to government officials.

Le Van Quy, deputy director of the Ho Chi Minh City Bureau for Social Evil Prevention, claims a growing number of men are becoming gay sex workers in the South East Asian country, reported Vietnamnet Bridge.

December 4, 2012

LGBT rights group ICS show the people behind the stigmatizing term 'pêdê' in Vietnam

A short film about trans women in Vietnam made by LGBT rights organization ICS has been watched over 200,000 times on YouTube.

The film follows Yuki and her friends, showing the people behind the label 'pêdê' - the title of the film - a abusive term for trans women in Vietnam.

'We decided to name it "Pêdê" - the word that society still uses to stigmatize transgender people - as a way to have a closer look at a familiar yet taboo topic,' says ICS in the description of the video.

November 27, 2012

Awareness and acceptance of LGBT people promoted at joyful event in Ho Chi Minh City

Eight hundred people gathered in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam on Sunday to celebrate diversity of sexualities.

The event, which carried the slogan ‘Open your heart - embrace diversity’ was organized by Vietnamese LGBT rights group ICS (Information, Connecting and Sharing).

The three-hour event feature cheerful activities like games, singing and performances. It culminated with a mass dance to Lady Gaga’s Born This Way and PSY’s Gangnam Style.

ICS gave out souvenir badges that read ‘I love him’, ‘I love her’ or ‘I love diversity’.

October 23, 2012

Gatherings in Ho Chi Minh City, Hanoi and Da Nang to spread an anti-homophobic bullying message in Vietnam

The budding gay rights movement in Vietnam celebrated Spirt Day on Friday with activists wearing purple to protest homophobic bullying of young people.

Dozens gathered in Ho Chi Minh City, Hanoi and Da Nang and the organizers, LGBT rights group ICS (Information, Connecting and Sharing), also spread the anti-bullying message through Facebook.

Research by Vietnam’s Institute for Studies of Society, Economy and Environment (iSEE) in 2008 showed that 15% of LGBT people interviewed were beaten, locked-up or taken to a psychiatric hospital by their family.

October 23, 2012

Gatherings in Ho Chi Minh City, Hanoi and Da Nang to spread an anti-homophobic bullying message in Vietnam

The budding gay rights movement in Vietnam celebrated Spirt Day on Friday with activists wearing purple to protest homophobic bullying of young people.

Dozens gathered in Ho Chi Minh City, Hanoi and Da Nang and the organizers, LGBT rights group ICS (Information, Connecting and Sharing), also spread the anti-bullying message through Facebook.

Research by Vietnam’s Institute for Studies of Society, Economy and Environment (iSEE) in 2008 showed that 15% of LGBT people interviewed were beaten, locked-up or taken to a psychiatric hospital by their family.

September 26, 2012

Rainbow flags, Lady Gaga and dance routines in Ho Chi Minh City, Hanoi and Da Nang City celebrate the fight for LGBT rights in Vietnam

Vietnam celebrated LGBT rights with dancing and music at three flashmobs in Ho Chi Minh City, Hanoi and Da Nang on Sunday.

Rainbow flags, dance routines and a helium balloon release created a colorful spectacle with over one thousand people gathering in total in Ho Chi Minh City, Hanoi and Da Nang to present the message ‘Yeu la Yeu’ (Love is Love).

September 26, 2012

Rainbow flags, Lady Gaga and dance routines in Ho Chi Minh City, Hanoi and Da Nang City celebrate the fight for LGBT rights in Vietnam

Vietnam celebrated LGBT rights with dancing and music at three flashmobs in Ho Chi Minh City, Hanoi and Da Nang on Sunday.

Rainbow flags, dance routines and a helium balloon release created a colorful spectacle with over one thousand people gathering in total in Ho Chi Minh City, Hanoi and Da Nang to present the message ‘Yeu la Yeu’ (Love is Love).