LGBTI global news 24-7

Content about LGBT rights by country or territory

March 19, 2015

Immigration rules in both countries bar 'undesirable' persons from entering

A prominent gay rights activist Wednesday (18 March) challenged laws barring LGBTI people from entering Belize and Trinidad and Tabago at the region's top court.

Maurice Tomlinson argued that obscure immigration rules barring entry to LGBTI people violated his freedom of movement rights, enshrined in a key Caribbean Community treaty.

The Jamaican testified before the Trinidad-based Caribbean Court of Justice via video link so as not to break the country's immigration laws.

March 15, 2015

His American Center for Law and Justice (ACLJ) group was named to the Human Rights Watch (HRW) 'Hall of Shame' in 2013 for 'endangering the lives and dignity of LGBT people' around the world

Republican Jeb Bush, who is being watched closely by gay rights activists as he continues to publicly oppose marriage equality while saying that his view is evolving, is said to have surprised some observers with the appointment of prominent anti-gay activist Jordan Sekulow to his Right to Rise PAC (political action committee).

Sekulow is an attorney, radio show host and the right-wing Executive Director of the American Center for Law and Justice (ACLJ).

March 2, 2015

Our Business Editor, David Hudson, explains what you can expect from the new Gay Star News business section

One of the reasons why we’ve decided to launch a dedicated Business Section is because the corporate world’s attitude towards LGBTI issues has changed tremendously and rapidly in the last 20 years.

At first, some forward-thinking companies began to wake up to the spending power of LGBTI communities – latching on to the so-called ‘Dorothy Dollar’ and ‘Pink Pound’.

Others realized that the gay scene was often the first to adopt new trends – making it the idea place to launch new bespoke products.

February 24, 2015

Randy Berry will advocate for LGBTI rights globally

The US State Department Monday (23 February) named Randy Berry as its first LGBTI rights envoy.

The openly gay diplomat is currently the US consul general in Amsterdam and has served in Bangladesh, Egypt, Uganda, and South Africa.

Secretary of State John Kerry said he 'could not be more proud' to announce Berry as the first-ever special envoy for the human rights of LGBTI persons.

February 6, 2015

New post will be filled by an openly gay Foreign Service officer

US Secretary of State John Kerry will announce the appointment later this month of a special envoy to advocate for LGBTI rights overseas.

The move pre-empts a bill introduced last week in boths houses of the Senate that would make promoting LGBTI rights a priority of US foreign policy.

January 31, 2015

'I am a strong believer in traditional marriage and I do not construe homosexual rights as human rights'

A US lawmaker sees no connection between human rights and LGBTI equality.

On 27 January, during hearing on Nigeria, Representative Chris Smith separated gay and human rights.

'I am a strong believer in traditional marriage and I do not construe homosexual rights as human rights,' the New Jersey Republican said, according PolitickerNJ.

January 30, 2015

Legislation creates a special LGBTI envoy in the State Department

US lawmakers in both of houses of congress yesterday (29 January) introduced a bill to promote and protect LGBTI rights globally.

The International Human Rights Defense Act would create a special envoy in the State Department to coordinate efforts to prevent and respond to discrimination and violence against LGBTI people worldwide.

January 17, 2015

Missed the debate at the Gay Star Travel Expo? Find out what the most influential worldwide names in gay activism had to say

World leaders in LGBTI rights debated the biggest LGBTI issues at the Gay Star Travel Expo today (17 January).

Veteran human rights campaigner Peter Tatchell, Nigerian activist Bisi Alimi and Ugandan gay rights campaigner Edwin Sesange discussed the question: ‘Are we winning or losing the fight for LGBTI rights worldwide.

National Aids Trust CEO Deborah Gold chaired the debate.

Alimi began by questioning what ‘success’ is, saying 14% of young LGBTI people are homeless in the UK.

January 6, 2015

But 60% say refusing to hire an LGBTI person is discriminatory

Almost 70% of Hong Kong people believe society should tolerate anti-gay views, according to a new survey.

The results released yesterday (5 January) also showed that 57% of respondents said schools should not have to teach that homosexuality and heterosexuality are both 'beautiful.'

Hong Kong Polytechnic University interviewed 611 adults in November for the survey, which was commissioned by the anti-gay Family School Sexual Orientation Discrimination Ordinance Concern Group.

December 29, 2014

Money will win over morality

The moral case for supporting LGBTI rights isn’t persuading global policymakers.

We have proved discrimination and abuse against lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex people is a violation of human rights. But around 80 countries still criminalize homosexuality and most others don’t give LGBTI people equality or protection.

The moral argument alone won’t win. It’s time we spoke to world leaders in a language they understand.

December 12, 2014

Nigerian pastor explains why Jesus loves gays but African Christians do not

To win the struggle to change men and women’s hearts and minds, one must consider what the Bible calls strongholds – ideologies, views or thinking that have been held on to for a long time.

When that thinking is wrong, the challenge is great.

Many African strongholds include the view that homosexuality is paganistic and paganism is bad. The second is that gay white men want to pollute black children (see the justifications for Uganda's anti-gay laws).

December 5, 2014

Law professor says 'you cannot make a human wrong a human right'

Civil rights activists yesterday (4 December) protested a speech by an anti-gay law professor at a Human Rights Day seminar hosted by the EU Delegation to Singapore.

Several activists held a rainbow flag and placards reading 'LGBT rights are human rights' while Thio Li-ann delivered her speech.

Jean Chong, co-founder of LGBTI advocacy group Sayoni, told GSN that the silent protest 'was to address the elephant in the room and civil society’s disagreement to the EU’s insistence on inviting Thio in spite of her views on LGBTQ people.'

November 21, 2014

City government is mulling an anti-gay hate law

The Seoul Municipal Government (SMG) yesterday (20 November) was forced to postpone a hearing on gay rights after 200 Christian protesters stormed city hall.

The hearing was called to gather opinions for the drafting of a Charter of Human Rights for Citizens in Seoul.

However, experts are divided on whether the law should include a ban on discrimination against LGBTI people.

November 13, 2014

Study finds only 1 per cent are out to their fathers

Seven out of 10 young gay men in Korea hide their sexuality from their parents, a new study has found.

Seoul National University human ecology major Jo Nam-seok surveyed 103 gay men in their 20s and presented her findings on Tuesday (23 November).

Her study found that 68.9 percent of respondents had not come out to their parents for fear of disapproval, especially from their fathers.

Only 1 per cent said their father knew their sexual orientation, compared with 19.4 per cent of mothers.

November 6, 2014

'Same-sex cohabitants' were dropped from the draft law in 2012

LGBTI activists delivered a letter to Macanese government headquarters yesterday demanding domestic violence laws include gay couples.

The city's first LGBTI rights group, Rainbow of Macau, was founded after 'same-sex cohabitants' were dropped from the draft domestic violence law in November 2012.

October 31, 2014

A 26 year veteran of the fight for LGBTI equality in Australia, Australian Marriage Equality national convener Rodney Croome has been honored as the 2015 Australian of the Year for his home state of Tasmania

Veteran spokesperson for the Tasmanian Gay and Lesbian Rights Group and national convener of Australian Marriage Equality, Rodney Croome has been named the 2015 Australian of the year for his home state of Tasmania.

Croome was honored for his 26 year involvement in the fight for LGBTI equality which has culminated in his role as national spokesperson for the campaign to legalize same-sex marriage in Australia.

October 27, 2014

Opposition leader is standing trial for sodomy this week

A right-wing Malaysian newspaper has said supporting oppositon leader Anwar Ibrahim means supporting the international LGBTI rights movement ahead of his sodomy trial on Tuesday.

Anwar has been prosecuted under the country's colonial anti-gay law four times in what LGBTI groups have called a politically motivated prosecution. He is appealing his March sentence of five years in jail.

October 22, 2014

A comprehensive report by Human Rights Watch details how Jamaica’s LGBT community faces widespread discrimination and violence

A new report by the New York-based organization Human Rights Watch paints a damning portrait of the treatment of LGBT people in Jamaica.

The Human Rights Watch report – Not Safe at Home – follows five weeks of study on the Caribbean island country from April to June last year.

October 20, 2014

About 1.7 million people called in to protest the country's anti-gay law

Indian actor Aamir Khan's hit talk show Satyamev Jayate last night tackled the taboo subject of 'alternative sexualities,' with many viewers saying the program changed their perception of LGBTI people.

Guests included transgender woman Gazal Dhaliwal and her parents, popular psychologist Deepak Kashyap and LGBTI activists.

Khan listened sympathetically as his LGBTI guests told their coming out stories. Several stressed the importance of parental relationships in shaping their lives and fighting depression and suicidial thoughts.

October 1, 2014

Homophobia is not a crime in the country even though it has the highest LGBTI murder rate in the world

At least 216 LGBTI people have been murdered this year in Brazil where homophobia is not a crime.

The data was collected by the Gay Group of Bahia from January to 29 September and is based on police records and news reports as there are no official statistics.

The region with the most cases was the Northeast (43%) and the city with more cases per capita was Cuiabá, with 0.03 homicides per 1,000 inhabitants.

Gay men are the most affected (59%), followed by transvestites (35%) and lesbians (4%).

September 16, 2014

The country's UN ambassador says LGBTI rights 'go against our values'

A top Bangladeshi diplomat has said the Muslim country will oppose any recommendations on LGBTI rights at an upcoming UN conference on sexual and reproductive health and rights.

Abdul Momen, Bangladesh Permanent Representative to the UN, told the Dhaka Tribune, 'It goes against our values. Like many other countries including those Muslims and Christian, we opposed it.'

September 16, 2014

The German man is still in hospital with severe internal bleeding and head injuries

The Serbian prime minister and members of the European parliament have condemned Saturday's attack on a German LGBTI rights activist in Belgrade.

The 27-year-old man suffered severe internal bleeding and head injuries and is still in the hospital.

Serbian Prime Minister Aleksandar Vučić said in a statement that 'the state will do everything to protect and respect the right to non-discrimination.'

The attack has also turned the spotlight on the situation for LGBTI people in the candidate EU member state.

September 11, 2014

Three groups sent an open letter to 112 universities asking for corrections to discriminatory teaching materials and gender diversity courses

Three Chinese activist groups sent an open letter to 112 universities demanding better education and protection for LGBTI students in time for yesterday's national Teachers' Day celebrations.

The letter asked universities to correct disciminatory teaching materials and offer gender diversity courses, and was jointly signed by Changsha-based China Same Sex Love (CSSL), Beijing-based LGBT Rights Advocacy China and Nanjing-based anti-discrimination group Justice for All.

August 17, 2014

The Mumbai chief of India’s ruling party, BJP, says his party is now against the misuse of section 377 and will raise the issue in Parliament

'Criminalizing the gay community by misusing section 377 of the IPC [Indian Penal Code] is not acceptable to the [ruling] BJP,' Mumbai chief Ashish Shelar told some 250 attendees at a special Independence Day event 'Acceptance Meet' On Friday. The meeting was organized by The Humsafar Trust, an NGO in Mumbai which promotes LGBTI rights, and other community organizations.