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Content about LGBT rights in Turkey

October 4, 2014

The person accused of homophobic acts will have to prove his or her innocence, rather than being presumed innocent until proven guilty as is usually the case

Spain's autonomous region of Catalonia, of which Barcelona is the capital city, on Thursday passed a controversial law to protect lesbians, gays, bisexuals and transsexuals (LGTB) from homophobic attacks.

July 20, 2014

LGBTs in Turkey hail the Supreme Court's confirmation that a news article calling gays 'perverts' constitutes hate speech

For the first time, hate speech on the basis of sexual orientation has been officially recognized by a court in Turkey.

July 2, 2014

If you are an LGBT parent in the US, or are simply considering parenthood, you need to know about the Family Equality Council and its work. Executive Director, Gabriel Blau, talked to GSN…

October 6, 2013

Congresswoman Sol Aragones’ bid comes after hate crime monitor reports 17 killings in 2012

In 1998, a police act in the Philippines led to the creation of dedicated desks in police stations across the country after society realized crimes against women and children needed a different perspective with the victims needing greater sensitivity and support.

Run by female police officers, these desks now exclusively handle crimes against women and children.
Now Philippine Congresswoman Sol Aragones is seeking similar LGBT desks in every police station to handle hate crimes against the community.

September 19, 2013

The first QueerFest since Russia banned 'homosexual propaganda' will see over 1500 visitors attend the 10 day event to take a stand against gay hate

Risking fines and arrests, the fifth annual international QueerFest launched in St Petersburg today.

Attracting nearly 2000 visitors every year, Russia's 'queer pride and culture festival' comprises seminars, discussions, photo exhibits and concerts to make a statement against homophobia.

It will be the first festival to take place under the country's law banning 'homosexual propaganda' where individuals and organizations can face fines and jail time for promoting LGBT rights.

August 15, 2013

Turkey’s Constitutional Consensus Committee agreed Monday that sexual orientation be added to a section of a draft new constitution – which if passed would make it only the second Muslim country to protect sexual minorities

Turkey looks set to join Albania as one of only two majority Muslim nations to protect sexual minorities from discrimination after its Constitutional Consensus Committee agreed sexual orientation should be added to a section of a new draft constitution.

August 3, 2013

Brighton Pride on England’s south coast sends love to LGBT Russia and message of support to all the countries where being gay is criminalized

Packed crowds have cheered the Brighton Pride march where local fundraising and international LGBT rights were at the top of the agenda.

The LGBT seaside capital on the south coast of England will now continue the party for the rest of the day (3 August) with a big festival in Preston Park.

Fronted by the roaring engines of the Sussex Dykes on Bikes, the parade made its way through the streets watched by thousands of spectators.

At the front was George Montague, 90, who has been to every Brighton & Hove Pride.

August 1, 2013

Openly LGBT politicians are thriving in the US and across Europe. So is it hypocritical for some to stay in the closet?

This year we have turned an important page for European human rights thanks to France and England and Wales, legalizing gay marriage.

But the bigger EU mission is far from accomplished as only eight of the 28 member states of the European Union currently recognize same-sex marriages.

Germany, the largest EU country, is still not allowing it. The German Foreign Minister and Deputy Chancellor Guido Westerwelle and his long-time partner Michael Mronz could only be ‘civil partnered’ when they wed in 2010.

July 31, 2013

From boycotting vodka to snubbing the Winter Olympics, westerners have advanced many strategies to tackle growing hate in Russia. But what do LGBT activists actually want us to do?

In the last few months we have seen growing violence against LGBT people and allies in Russia and the enactment of the Russian law on ‘propaganda of non-traditional sexual relations among minors’ that renders illegal statements and actions that acknowledge LGBT equality.

June 8, 2013

Secretary of State Kerry pays homage to Stonewall and insists freedom is a right for LGBT people worldwide

The face of US foreign policy honored June as LGBT Pride Month and asserted a commitment to gay rights around the world.

Secretary of State John Kerry released a video on the State Department website. He connected gay pride celebrations to larger human rights struggles.

May 17, 2013

GSN meets one of Europe’s leading champions for LGBT equality who argues gay and trans citizens need the European unity more than ever

It was raining in Brussels and I was late. I’d over-estimated my walking speed and sense of direction on my way to meet with Michael Cashman, one of the UK’s representatives to the European Parliament.

His assistant Renaud rang me: ‘Where are you now?’

‘I don’t know. I can see the Sofitel?’

‘Oh. You have to cross the park. I will meet you in reception.’

Well-groomed and impeccably dressed, Renaud was sympathetic when I finally made it to the reception of the parliament – my clothes dripping and my shoes covered in grass.

April 24, 2013

Dr Purna Sen, new chair of the Kaleidoscope Trust explains how the organization supports LGBT activists around the world so they can win rights for us all

Parliaments in France, Uruguay and New Zealand have passed legislation to permit equal marriage in the past few weeks. In New Zealand collective singing in parliament greeted the news – the joy of song permeates so much of the ways in which people connect with each other there and the celebrations of equality were in no small part about connection and community.

April 15, 2013

Lawyer Oz, who has been active in LGBT rights for 18 years, wins the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission's Felipa de Souza Award

Yasemin Oz, who has campaigned for LGBT-rights in Turkey since the mid-1990s, is being honored with a human rights award.

The Felipa de Souza Award, given by the International Gay & Lesbian Human Rights Commission (IGLHRC) every year, recognizes courage and activism in LGBT human rights work.

Oz was chosen as this year's recipient of the award because of her dedication to improving LGBT rights in Turkey.

February 15, 2013

Opposition party says the police are failing to protect LGBT people in Turkey

The main opposition party in Turkey has requested that the government start a parliamentary inquiry into LGBT rights.

Binnaz Toprak, Istanbul deputy of the Republican People's Party (CHP) said the Turkish authorities were failing to prevent discrimination against LGBT people and protect them from violence.

February 10, 2013

Turkish military is set to adopt a ‘Don’t as Don’t tell’ policy

The Turkish Armed Forces is set to introduce a new regulation that essentially states to gay soldiers: ‘If you come out – you’ll be expelled, if you stay in the closet – we’ll do nothing’.

The old articles of ‘unnatural intercourse’ and ‘psychosexual disorders’ as reasons to dismiss a soldier from the army, are to be replaced with a new criteria: ‘sexual identity and behavioral patterns should be dominant and apparent in every part of life’.

January 8, 2013

Turkish government’s revised draft regulation for the army continues to criminalize gay and transgender people as ‘unnatural intercourse’ and will be used as reason for discrimination and punishment  

The Turkish government submitted a new draft regulation for the Turkish Armed Forces that retains the article ‘unnatural intercourse’ which has been used to stigmatize and punish LGBT people.

Turkish LGBT rights group accuses the government of colluding with the army to preserve anti-gay and trans measures.

January 4, 2013

Turkish activists claim: Turkey's own progress report to the European Union ignores repeated critique of the country's failure to protect LGBT people 

Activists slammed Turkey's progress report to the European Union (EU), saying it totally ignores the EU’s recommendations regarding LGBT rights

Turkey’s minister for EU Affairs and Chief Negotiator Egemen Bağış said the report is ‘not just a reaction’ but indicates the government’s ‘commitment to reform’.

Turkish LGBT activists, however, pointed out that the report ignores the problems and demands of gay people and justifies previous and current criticism expressed by the EU Commission.

December 17, 2012

Jean-Claude Roger Mbédé's three-year prison term upheld by appeals court in Cameroon, one of Africa's most anti-gay states

An appeals court in Cameroon has upheld a three-year sentence against a man found guilty of ‘homosexuality’ for sending a text message to another man saying: ‘I'm very much in love with you’.

Activists said that today’s court's ruling in Yaoundé, Cameroon’s capital, is a major setback in a country seen as one of the the most repressive in Africa towards LGBT people.

Jean-Claude Roger Mbédé, 32 year-old university student, had been provisionally released on bail in July after serving a year and a half in prison.

December 10, 2012

ILGA-Europe protests ‘homosexuality anti-propaganda’ law plans in Russia, Moldova, Lithuania and Ukraine

A leading European gay rights group has used international Human Rights Day to condemn gay gag laws now being discussed in Russia, Moldova, Lithuania and Ukraine.

ILGA-Europe says all the planned legislation in Eastern Europe violates basic human rights principles and sees the laws as a new attempt to criminalize lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender communities.

Known as ‘homosexuality anti-propaganda laws’ they already exist in some states in Russia, most famously in St Petersburg where their introduction this year sparked international outcry.

November 26, 2012

Gay men will be discharged from the Turkish army because of their 'lifestyle choices' according to a new regulation

Being gay will be considered as a serious offence, along with murder, fraud and bribery and reason for dismissal from the Turkish army.

According to the daily Milliyet, gays will be discharged from the Turkish army due to their ‘lifestyle choices’, according to a new penalty regulation draft of the Turkish Armed Forces.

September 14, 2012

Turkey’s ruling Justice and Development Party vetoed a proposal that aims to bring in constitutional protection for LGBT rights

The Justice and Development Party (AKP) has vetoed a proposal jointly introduced by the main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) and the Peace and Democracy Party (BDP) that would bring in constitutional protection for gay rights.

The (AKP) claimed that LGBT rights should have no place in the Turkish constitution, reported the Turkish paper Hürriyet Daily News.

September 13, 2012

Jamaican Christians are marching for ‘sexual purity’ and against homosexuality – so is this a sign that a new approach to LGBT rights is needed?

They call it ‘Love March 2012’ and it is scheduled to take place this Saturday (15 September) in Jamaica – but the name disguises its true purpose.

June 28, 2012

Santiago's 12th gay pride march attracts a record of 80,000 participants including wide range of politicians and the British ambassador to Chile

On Saturday (23 June), the 12th pride parade called March for Equality took place in Santiago with over 80,000 people demanding further advancement of LGBT rights in Chile.

Marcha por la Igualidad or March for Equality took place on a sunny winter day in Santiago, with attendees demanding equality before the law.

The march was also attended by prominent politicians as well as by the British ambassador Jon Benjamin, who read a letter of support for pride and LGBT rights on behalf of the European Union.