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February 23, 2015

Tzipi Livni could become one of two rotating premiers if her coalition wins

An Israeli politician has made a campaign promise to legalize gay marriage if she becomes prime minister in the March elections.

Tzipi Livni made the pledge at a weekly gay party called Dreck in Tel Aviv on Saturday night (21 February).

The Hatnuah party leader will become one of two rotating prime ministers if her coalition with Labor wins.

'Good evening Dreck. There's a chance that on March 20 we'll come to celebrate the end of the period of darkness, racism and discrimination and we'll start a period of light, love and equality,' she said.

February 19, 2015

Tokyo ward announces plan to recognize same-sex couples

Japan's prime minister has put up a constitutional barrier to gay marriage after a Tokyo ward announced plans to recognize same-sex couples.

Shinzo Abe told parliament Wednesday (18 February) that the issue 'concerns the foundation of how families in our country should be and thus requires extremely careful consideration.'

The current constitution 'does not envisage marriage between people of the same sex,' he said.

February 19, 2015

Alan Turing film spurs on record number of signatures

A petition calling on the government to pardon tens of thousands of men convicted under anti-gay UK laws has reached a milestone almost half a million signatures.

Spurred on by the recent portrayal of war-time codebreaker and gay man Alan Turing, played by Sherlock star Benedict Cumberbatch, 450,000 people have thrown their weight behind the campaign.

February 10, 2015

Judge says allegations of conspiracy are 'unsubstantiated by any facts'

Malaysia's top court today (10 February) upheld opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim's conviction for sodomy, which is illegal in the Muslim-majority.

Federal Court judge Arifin Zakat said there was 'overwhelming evidence' that the former deputy prime minister had sodomized a male aide, and defense allegations that the case was a political conspiracy were 'unsubstantiated by any facts whatsoever.'

February 8, 2015

It's the ninth time the PM has attended the annual gay event which is the largest in New Zealand with more than 12,000 attendees today

Prime Minister John Key, who has attended Auckland's annual Big Gay Out for nine years, appears to be taking the heckling in stride.

As he started his short speech on the main stage at Coyle Park, there were as many cheers as there were 'boos' and heckling from the crowd, according to media reports.

Key, however, smiled and told the crowd: 'Hello, how are you all? It's good to be back at The Big Gay Out. This is the ninth time I've been here.'

January 26, 2015

Lee Hsien Loong explains why he always wears pink

Singapore's prime minister Saturday (24 January) dodges a personal invitation to the city's largest LGBTI rally during a online Q&A.

Lee Hsien Loong fielded questions from the public on his personal Facebook page from the social network's Singapore offices.

During the 45-minute session, the premier managed to answer just 27 of nearly 1,500 questions, which ranged in topic from cats to gay rights.

Of the few he managed to answer, Lee decided to respond a question from LGBTI activist Lim Jialiang about his penchant for pink.

January 15, 2015

Yukio Hatoyama plays the first female president of the US

A former Japanese Prime Minister yesterday (14 January) made his musical debut musical in Tokyo – in drag!

Yukio Hatoyama played retired politician Rosario, who served as the first female president of the US, a part that required both singing and dancing.

Other cast members in the original production, Waist Size Story, included Orix senior chairman Yoshihiko Miyauchi and Japanese Red Cross Society president Tadateru Konoe.

The musical tells the story of former delinquents, who are now in their late 60s and live on the West Side of Manhattan.

January 5, 2015

UK prime minister says he is proud of legalizing same-sex marriage

UK Prime Minister David Cameron has said he is proud of his role in legalizing gay marriage but has yet to attend one.

The Conservative leader said he had received 'lots' of invitations to same-sex weddings and was certain he would go to one soon.

January 2, 2015

The Irish Taoisceach has vowed to campaign strongly for marriage equality – while some in his government now warn that complacency could result in a victory for the ‘no’ campaign

The Irish Taoisceach (the equivalent of Prime Minister) has been speaking about the forthcoming referendum in Ireland on same-sex marriage – due to take place in May.

Fine Gael’s Enda Kenny, who has previously been viewed as conservative, told journalists in a briefing that he would be happy to ‘campaign strongly’ for a 'yes' vote in the referendum, and has confirmed that he will take part in a live debate on the issue ahead of the vote.

January 1, 2015

Newly released documents from the government of Australian Prime Minister Bob Hawke reveal that it considered forcing gay men to be tested for HIV as it was feared the virus could have been running rampant in the community without anyone’s knowledge

Newly released cabinet papers for the years 1988 and 1989 have revealed the fears of the government of Australian Prime Minister Bob Hawke during the earliest years of the AIDS epidemic.

At that time over a thousand cases of HIV had been diagnosed since 1983, with around half of those people having died by 1988.

However as it was known by that time that a person could have the virus for many years without showing signs of being sick the Australian Government feared as many as 25,000 Australians could have already have been infected by 1988.

December 30, 2014

The plans, which never reached fruition, came about following meetings with anti-obscenity campaigner, Mary Whitehouse

It has been revealed that former British Prime Minister, Margaret Thatcher, briefly considered banning sex toys in the UK in the mid-1980s.

The revelation comes following the annual release of documents from the UK’s National Archive. They say that the change was considered after moral crusaders lobbied the Prime Minister, including Mary Whitehouse, whom Thatcher met on two occasions.

In September 1986, the then Home Secretary, Leon Brittan, wrote to Prime Minister Thatcher saying that there was a ‘strong case’ for banning sex toys under obscenity laws.

December 17, 2014

‘It has for sure provided us extra energy to continue our campaign for rights'

An investigation by a Nepalese govenment agency has refuted allegations of corruption at the country's largest LGBTI group.

The Social Welfare Council (SWC) has released a report that rebutted charges of corruption and irregularities leveled against the Blue Diamond Society (BDS) and founder Sunil Pant.

The allegations were made two years ago and resulted in the group losing its license as well as funding gaps and the demoralization of  its 750 full-time staff who were not paid for more than seven months.

December 11, 2014

But will PM David Cameron listen?

Prime Minister David Cameron is facing further divides in his Conservative party over the legalisation of same-sex marriage in England and Wales.

Anti-gay backbenchers have said in a letter they are 'alienated' Tories have little chance of winning the next General Election in May 2015.

The letter has been sent as dozens of gay couples have already this week converted their civil partnerships to marriages under the new UK government laws.

December 10, 2014

Australia House hosts the launch of a new work examining the wartime career of Sir Robert Menzies

As you walk down the Strand in London, Australia House is a major landmark. Construction began in 1913 and it was officially opened in 1918 – an incredibly ambitious building project that cost around £1 million – a huge investment and logistical challenge during the international upheaval of World War I.

December 3, 2014

Enda Kenny, Ireland’s Taoiseach and leader of the Fine Gael party, reportedly visited Pantibar for a pre-Christmas drink with his party’s LGBT group

Ireland’s Taoiseach – the country's equivalent to a Prime Minister – has been photographed enjoying a drink in a gay bar.

The photo was taken and posted on social media by gay rights activist Rory O’Neill, better known by his drag name, Panti Bliss.

December 2, 2014

Prime Minister Tony Abbott backs away from his election promise to allow a conscience vote on marriage equality

An Australian senator yesterday threatened to block legislation if the prime minister breaks his election promise to allow a conscience vote on gay marriage.

Liberal Democrat David Leyonhjelm introduced a private bill to legalize gay marriage in parliament last week.

November 28, 2014

Finnish MPs are expected to vote on whether to allow same-sex couples to marry later today and a majority of their party leaders support the reform

Finland may become the last of the Nordic countries to legalize same-sex marriage when MPs sit in parliament today.

Parliament debated the issue yesterday despite the parliament’s Legal Affairs Committee recommending that the bill be rejected.

A majority on the committee were concerned that allowing Finns to enter into same-sex marriages might make it harder for Finnish parents to adopt children from abroad, particularly from neighboring Russia.

November 28, 2014

Former Polish president says 'queers are ill as a result of their own wishes'

A street in San Francisco named after a homophobic Polish politician has been rechristened after a local gay hero.

The street sign was replaced on 20 November and now reads Dr Tom Waddell Place, after the man who founded the Gay Games in 1982.

The street already had a transgender clinic in his name.

November 7, 2014

'Homosexuality is not African. There was never any word for homosexuality here in this country before now'

A Uganda minister has claimed President Obama and Prime Minister David Cameron 'must not love their children' if they let them live in a country where same-sex marriage is legal.

Simon Lokodo, the Minister for Ethics, has claimed the two political leaders are 'not responsible parents' for allowing them to grow up in a society where LGBTI have rights.

'Homosexuality is not African. There was never any word for homosexuality here in this country before now,' he told GQ Magazine.

'This is foreign behavior.

October 31, 2014

Group of transgender women held off an armed mob then cleaned up after

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi has praised a group of transgender women who have been cleaning the streets of east Delhi where riots have been taking place.

The media has reported that the 15 women have been clearing stones and glass shards and giving brooms to residents.

Clashes between Hindus and Muslims broke out on Diwali for unknown reasons in the Trilokpuri area of the capital.

Modi tweeted, 'Good effort by Laila Shah & her friends towards Clean India.

'Such efforts are a big strength for Swachh Bharat Mission!'

October 29, 2014

Nicky Morgan says if the opportunity came up to vote for same-sex marriage again, she would vote differently

UK Equalities Minister Nicky Morgan has said if the opportunity to vote for same-sex marriage came up again, she would vote differently.

The 42-year-old Conservative politician caused outrage when she was named Minister for Women and Equalities by Prime Minister David Cameron on 15 July.

How could someone who voted against same-sex marriage have the best interest of LGBTI people at heart?

But now, Morgan says she has changed her mind and 'probably would' vote for same-sex marriage.

October 28, 2014

To celebrate Animal Month, in partnership with IFAW, we are giving away 25 soft cuddly toys for the cutest selfies of you and your beloved pets!

Gay Star News, in partnership with the International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW), has spent the month celebrating all things animal from sharing our appreciation of your beloved pets to raising awareness of animal welfare among the global LGBTI community.

To celebrate the end of Animal Month we are giving you the chance to win 1 of 25 soft cuddly toys - and all you have to do is send in a cute selfie of you and your beloved pet!

To Enter:

October 21, 2014

Gough Whitlam, who lead the Australian Government from 1972 to 1975 and was one of the first Labor Party leaders to champion the rights of gays and lesbians, passed away this morning aged 98

One of the first major Australian political figures to champion equal rights for gays and lesbians has passed away this morning, aged 98.

Gough Whitlam was leader of the Australian Labor Party from 1967 to 1977 and Australia’s prime minister from 1972 to 1975 – a period of incredible reform for Australia before his government was dismissed to end a constitutional crisis.

October 13, 2014

The Tasmanian state conference of Australia’s Liberal Party has voted yet again to keep opposition to same-sex marriage in its official platform despite voices in the party calling for a more inclusive approach

The membership of the Tasmanian Liberal Party State Council voted on Saturday to keep opposition to allowing same-sex couples to marry as part of its official platform, in a move that has been labelled retrograde by supporters of equality for LGBTI people.

The motion voted on at the state party’s annual conference was in support of keeping the current definition of marriage in the federal Marriage Act and was passed ‘on the voices’ without a count of hands.