LGBTI global news 24-7

Content about Middle East

August 14, 2014

The CNN anchor confirms the incident but not a report that it left him in tears

It's well known that the late Lauren Bacall did not suffer fools.

Or, it seems, teenagers who express a political opinion different from her own - even of that teenager happened to be future CNN anchor Anderson Cooper.

The year was 1982 and Cooper's mom, heiress and businesswoman Gloria Vanderbilt, had invited Bacall to a dinner at her Southampton house for actress Claudette Colbert.

July 19, 2014

In need of some star-gazing and wallaby-watching, Gareth Johnson leaves the world behind for a slower pace of life in Australia's idyllic beach town Port Douglas

In The Lego Movie, when the main character Emmet orders an over-priced coffee to start the day, it’s 'Awesome!' because everything is awesome in the world of Lego.

However as I collected my over-priced coffee at Melbourne’s Tullamarine airport, things around the world felt far from awesome...

May 19, 2014

Egyptian activists report increase in LGBTI arrests, particularly targeting gay men and trans people, and stories of torture and mistreatment by police

Gay rights activists in Egypt report police are cracking down on LGBTI people, and in some cases even resorting to torture.

A report compiled by the Egyptian Initiative for Personal Rights (EIPR) shows the crackdown, which particularly targets gay men and trans people, began in November 2012 when seven people were arrested in an apartment in Nasr city and taken to Nohza police station.

October 16, 2013

Three Kuwaiti lawmakers have attacked Amnesty International for questioning their country’s proposed ban on homosexuals entering the country, saying the organization should abandon its advocacy for the rights of ‘deviants’

A group of lawmakers in Kuwait have lashed out at human rights group Amnesty International for criticizing a proposal to introduce medical examinations to identify and bar homosexual or transgender foreigners from entering and working in any of the six Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) member counties.

October 16, 2013

Three Kuwaiti lawmakers have attacked Amnesty International for questioning their country’s proposed ban on homosexuals entering the country, saying the organization should abandon its advocacy for the rights of ‘deviants’

A group of lawmakers in Kuwait have lashed out at human rights group Amnesty International for criticizing a proposal to introduce medical examinations to identify and bar homosexual or transgender foreigners from entering and working in any of the six Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) member counties.

October 14, 2013

Reports ‘gay’ men were taken to police station naked after the raid and are facing anal probe torture tests. Total arrests may be greater than 14

Neighbors have broken into a gym and sauna in Egypt and ‘destroyed it’ after a police raid against gay sex, according to unconfirmed reports GSN has received.

It’s the latest development after at least 14 men were arrested for practicing ‘immorality’ or 'homosexual acts' inside the premises in the working-class El Marg district of Cairo.

October 12, 2013

Bahrain MP rejects medical screening idea, saying it can lead to discrimination against people from Asia and Europe

Oil-rich Middle East state Kuwait’s controversial proposal to start a medical test to screen transgender visitors and ban their entry in the Arabian Gulf region has been rejected by rights organizations as well as a fellow Arab state, which called the plan crazy and a violation of rights.

October 11, 2013

Lebanon’s capital is famous for the Middle East’s most handsome men, inspiring cuisine and open, yet discrete, gay life

When the topic of travel destinations arises amongst travellers, Beirut may as well stop the conversation in its tracks.

However, don’t let anyone dismay you- Lebanon is a complex nation that refuses to be reduced to an evening news sound bite.

To those fortunate enough to see this indomitable city, a knowing smile will be your reward from fellow travellers who have reveled in its nightlife, been wrapped warm by the hospitality of its people, and tasted the rich tapestry of its food.

September 23, 2013

Islamist group Al-Jamaa Al-Islamiya has accused Egypt’s Constituent Assembly of opening the door to same-sex marriage by amending the constitution to ensure that non-Muslims may not be punished for living non-Islamic lives

Egyptian Islamist group Al-Jamaa Al-Islamiya has accused Egyptian lawmakers of opening the door to same-sex marriage after they amended Article 3 of the country’s constitution to ensure non-Muslims could not be punished under sharia law.

Article 3 states that the personal and religious affairs of non-Muslim Egyptians should be governed by their own religious communities’ standards, not by those of Islam.

September 12, 2013

'I was filled with fear, anger and a stubborn resistance that had built up'

Wentworth Miller is opening up about his journey from closeted TV star to openly gay man speaking out for equality.

Miller, who shared with an audience at an Human Rights Campaign dinner in Seattle that he tried to commit suicide as a teen, also spoke about how his experiences growing up and his sudden fame kept him firmly closeted until last month.

September 9, 2013

From Russia to Rome: Fronte Nazionale released hundreds of banners saying 'I agree with Putin'. Roman LGBT associations ask the mayor to ban the campaign

An Italian far right movement has started campaigning in Rome in favor of Russian anti-gay laws.

Fronte Nazionale party released hundreds of banners in the Italian capital with the motto ‘Io sto con Putin’ (I agree with Putin).

The party’s founder, Adriano Tilgher, wrote on Facebook: ‘We stand by the Russian president because he said “no” to the war in the Middle East and because he is fighting the gay lobbies.

July 27, 2013

Soaring anti-LGBT violence in Iraq, Africa, Russia linked to American pressure on unique cultures, says Philadelphia university commentary

While Islamic rules make homosexuality a crime in the Middle East and sub-Saharan countries where Islam is the predominant religion, it’s the US ignorance of other cultures and its attempts to impose its views that is contributing to the growing homophobic violence around the globe.

This is the contention of a commentary in a Philadelphia university student newspaper.

July 20, 2013

A second Yemeni man, accused of being gay, is shot by suspected Al-Qaida linked Ansar Al Sharia militant

Al-Qaida linked Ansar Al Sharia

Yemen security officials claiming a 25-year-old man was wounded by a suspect associated to the Al-Qaida linked Ansar Al Sharia Islamist group.

The reason for the attack is the victim's alleged gay sexuality.

According to the Associated Press Mohammad Saeed was standing in front of his Huta home, the capital of the southern Lahj province, when he was wounded by an unknown assailant's gun shot.

July 17, 2013

Yemeni security officials say a 20-year-old man has been executed on suspicion of being homosexual by militants from an Al-Qaida linked group in what may be the 34th such extrajudicial killing of LGBTs in the country

Militants from the Al-Qaida linked Ansar Al Sharia islamist group have shot dead a 20-year-old they suspected of being gay in the Yemeni province of Lahj – though there is confusion over whether homosexuality is still a crime in the country.

Hashim Al Asmi was shot dead on Monday night by militants who then escaped on a motorbike.

Officials told the Washinton Post there had been 33 other gay men killed by the militant group.

Ansar Al Sharia is considered the main Al-Qaida affiliate in Yemen and is on the US’ formal list of banned terror organizations.

June 29, 2013

A Turkish man who murdered his son for being gay pleaded guilty but said it was ‘an accident’

A man who killed his son for being gay in the Kurdish province of Diyarbakır, Turkey, pleaded guilty but said it was ‘an accident.’

The father was charged, along with his two brothers, with the murder of his 17 year-old son, known by initials R.Ç., in a trial has been ungoing for over a year.

May 16, 2013

Not a single Palestinian was invited to speak at a reception held by the US Embassy in Tel Aviv, Israel in honor of IDAHO

The US Embassy in Tel-Aviv, Israel has reportedly excluded Palestinians from speaking at reception in honor of the International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia (IDAHO).

Although Aswat, a Palestinian organization for Gay Women, was invited to attend, their representative was not allowed to make a speech at the Ambassador's Tel-Aviv residence tonight (16 May).

May 7, 2013

Nitzan Horowitz hopes to become Tel-Aviv's first gay mayor and invest in the city's community and diversity

Nitzan Horowitz announced his intention to run for election to Israel’s largest city, Tel Aviv, against the incumbent Ron Huldai.

Horowitz, of the left of centre Meretz party, is the country’s only openly gay Member of the Israeli Knesset (MK), a post he intends to resign if elected to the be the mayor of Tel-Aviv.

His annoncement yesterday (6 May) pits the 49 year-old Horowitz against Labor’s Huldai in the 22 October elections.

If he wins, he would become Tel Aviv’s first openly gay mayor, and the first in any Israeli city or the Middle East.

April 24, 2013

Gay and trans party goers rounded, beaten, stripped naked and humiliated by municipal police under direct orders of Beirut, Lebanon suburb mayor Antoine Shakhtoura

Municipal police rounded clubbers outside Beirut’s prime gay club, Ghost, arrested and transported them back in their car boots to the police station where they were forced to strip naked, photographed, beaten and humiliated.

According to Roy Khouri, Gay Middle East’s Beirut correspondent, all the detainees (five gay Syrians and a Lebanese trans woman) were severly beaten and transported in the boot of officers’ cars in the early hours of Sunday (21 April).

April 23, 2013

Kurdish men and women in Iran have cross-dressed to protest a ‘sexist’ punishment where a man was sentenced to be paraded down the street in female clothing

Kurdish men from the Marivan County in the Kurdistan province of Iran have launched a cross-dressing campaign to redress outmoded concepts of masculinity and femininity.

Over the last week, over 150 Kurdish men have posted photographs of themselves in women’s clothing to campaign against the sexist nature of a court sentence which led to the public humiliation of a man by dressing him in women’s clothing.

April 13, 2013

Egyptian Canadian actor and LGBT rights advocate joins US gay media advocacy organization as a spokesperson and fundraiser

GLAAD, the US LGBT media advocacy organization, announced that the Egyptian/Canadian actor and LGBT advocate Omar Sharif Jr. will join its staff as spokesperson.

Sharif Jr. will become the organization’s co-spokesperson, alongside Wilson Cruz, and will also be helping with fundraising.

Commenting on the appointment, Sharif Jr said: ‘I’m thrilled to be joining GLAAD in their culture-changing work.

March 28, 2013

Saudi Arabia's religious police arrested an editor of a well known daily who was allegedly preparing to attend a 'gay party'

A journalist and editor at a ‘well-known’ daily newspaper was arrested in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, for planning to attend a ‘gay party’, using make up and possession of alcohol.

The kingdom’s religious police known as the Commission for the Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice arrested the unnamed man during the weekend.

March 20, 2013

Despite his defence lawyers saying he will face the death penalty, the UK's Ministry of Justice has claimed Saudi Arabia has agreed to let him live out the rest of his sentence in prison

An allegedly gay Saudi Arabian prince jailed for life for murdering his manservant was flown home to serve the rest of his sentence on Monday (18 March).

Prince Saud bin Abdulaziz bin Nasir al Saud flew to Saudi Arabia after spending less than three years in a British jail.

The 36-year-old was convicted in 2010 of murdering Bandar Abdulaziz in a London hotel after weeks of attacks.

March 8, 2013

Senior psychologist in the army says abuse is covered up, and speaks of his own experiences as a victim of anti-gay bullying

A whistleblower has spoken out on Australian TV about the 'cover-up' of abuse in the army.

Lieutenant Colonel Paul Morgan, an openly gay senior army psychologist in the Australian Defence Force (ADF) said on ABC TV on yesterday:

'The way army deals with abuse is entirely consistent with how you would run a cover-up.'

Morgan, whose job is to look after the mental health of soldiers serving in East Timor, Iraq and the Middle East, said:

February 21, 2013

Gay Muslim advocate Omar Kuddus demands a swift response to the students who called on gays to be killed for kissing

GSN reported on Tuesday (19 February) about a Manchester student who secretly filmed an extremist Muslim at his Students’ Union saying gays should be executed.

Colin Cortbus, a Middle East studies student at the university in north-west England, used a small camera to film the event. It was organized by the Muslim-led Global Aspirations of Women student group.