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April 17, 2014

In a brand new GSN weekly feature, we shine a spotlight on people fighting for LGBTI rights in countries around the world

Lesbians, gays, bisexuals, transgender and intersex people in Bulgaria are invisible.

A common mantra in the country is people have nothing against homosexuals, as long as they remain as discreet as possible, voiceless and hidden.

As a Bulgarian myself, I have seen for years how crucial problems of society are being swept like dust under the carpet.

And because no one talks about it, the fight for the LGBTI community to get any rights is slow, and often silent.

April 15, 2014

The only child of Cher and the late Sonny Bono opens up on RuPaul's Drag Race in appearance with his maternal grandmother

Transgender activist and actor Chaz Bono dropped by RuPaul's Drag Race to help contestants learn to conduct a celebrity interview and in the process, opened up a bit about himself.

'You know, there was a number of years where I knew I was transgender but was afraid to do anything about it,' Bono told one of the contestants.

But once Bono, 45, did decide to transition, he shared his story by writing a book called Becoming Chaz and being the focus of a documentary of the same name.

April 15, 2014

In an effort to stop LGBTI elderly people ‘returning to the closet’, Spain is building a special retirement home

Spain is opening its first gay retirement home in Madrid.

The 26 December Foundation, a Spanish organisation for the LGBT society, started the retirement home project because ‘as far as society is concerned, elderly LGBT don’t exist’.

The project is an attempt at stopping Spain’s elderly LGBT population from returning to the ‘closet’ in old age.

‘They don’t have children and grandchildren they can talk about and often they conceal their sexual orientation to avoid rejection,’ Federico Armenteros, president of 26 December Foundation, said.

April 3, 2014

Spoiler alert, at the show a 19-year-old student said he would have sex for the first time - he did not have sex

A gay teen who planned to lose his virginity in the ‘name of art’ pulled out, and instead performed something a little different.

Clayton Pettet, a 19-year-old art student, vowed to perform a piece called ‘Art School Stole My Virginity’.

Before the show on 1 April, he claimed he would lose his anal virginity live on stage and then discuss it with the audience afterwards.

March 27, 2014

Labour MP Ben Bradshaw urges the Church of England to be more clear on whether priests will be punished for marrying their same-sex partners

Church of England is being told it needs to make it clear whether it will sack a priest for marrying a same-sex partner.

Ben Bradshaw, a gay Labour MP, has accused the Church of ‘trying to have its cake and eat it’ by accepting same-sex marriage for members, but not for clergy.

Raising the question in the House of Commons today (27 March), the former cabinet minister asked how the Church would discipline any who disobey its ruling.

March 20, 2014

The gas explosion in Harlem highlights an underlying tension between poorer black residents and ‘white homos’ gentrifying the area

Building 1644 on Park Avenue is gone. So, too, is building 1646.

On 12 March witnesses and residents of the area all reported hearing an explosion before the buildings leveled leaving plumes of dust where they once stood. Tremors from the fiery blast were felt more than a mile away.

The night before the conflagration, the smell of gas was detectable. These two buildings, like many surrounding ones, housed New York City’s poor and low-income families on 116th Street in an enclave known as Spanish Harlem.

March 18, 2014

The Brisbane Hustlers have beat gay rugby teams from across Australia and New Zealand to win the annual Purchas Cup

A team from the state of Queensland has won Australia and New Zealand’s annual Purchas Cup for gay rugby beating out teams from Sydney, Melbourne and New Zealand.

The Sydney Convicts had been the favourites to win – being the current reigning world champions of gay rugby - but the Brisbane Hustlers came up on top beating them 12 to 5 in a surprise result.

The Hustlers may have had a home ground advantage as it was the first time the competition has been held inside Brisbane’s Ballymore Stadium – the home of rugby in the city.

March 17, 2014

The Central Station was the haven for LGBTI Russians until a 'campaign' was allegedly launched to get the club to vacate the premises

March 10, 2014

Police have repeatedly attempted to evict the LGBTI youths from the sewers, with attempts to 'burn' them out and conducting early morning raids 

Jamaica gay teens thrown out by their families, chased out of shelters and abandoned by the state have been told they can live in sewers.

A New Kingston judge has advised police that LGBTI teens are allowed to stay in their last option for refuge as sewers are public spaces.

Police have repeatedly tried to evict the youngsters from the sewers and gullies, on the pretext they ‘attract criminals’.

Last week on 5 March, officers once again raided the gutters and demanded the youth leave immediately.

March 1, 2014

'... Ukrainian LGBT people share the most of traditional values of the Ukrainian people and are in no way seeking [a] fight with the churches.'

As the Russian Parliament gave authority to President Vladimir Putin to use military action against Ukraine, the country's LGBTI citizens wondered if the embattled government would respect their equality.

Svyatoslav Sheremet, director of the Gay Forum of Ukraine, sent a release to PRIDE Solidarity, a group that supports LGBTI people in eastern and central Europe.

February 28, 2014

The Palestinian and Israeli problem as highlighted by a new dragged-up theater show

It just so happened the person supposed to attend Ballad of the Burning Star with yours truly had a pre-show panic attack at London’s Old Street tube station. It was rush hour and they’re not used to public transport.

Sympathetic to a variety of mental health issues, I sent them home with a suggestion they should drink some wine and lie down. I then called another friend, who happens to be a Greek Orthodox priest. Could he get to Battersea Arts Centre in 30 minutes? Yes, he could. Amen, sister.

February 28, 2014

'Obama has released the homo demons on the black man. Look out black women. A white homo may take your man'

James David Manning is not a fan of USA President Barack Obama, basketball player Jason Collins, and National Football League draft prospect Michael Sam.

Additionally, the pastor of ATLAH World Missionary Church, located in New York City, cares little for 'white homos.'

February 19, 2014

Star Trek icon tells GSN: “This Olympics is really a chilling thing because it reminds me of the 1936 Olympics when the Olympics Committee provided an international platform for Adolf Hitler'

George Takei has been watching some of the Olympics in Sochi even though he strongly believes they never should have been allowed to be held in a country with an anti-gay propaganda law in place.

The openly gay Star Trek icon tells Gay Star News that he considers the International Olympic Committee 'spineless' for not moving the games after it was clear that 'Russia breaks the pledge to the Olympic creed of no discrimination.'

February 18, 2014

President Yoweri Museveni is believed to have signed the anti-gay bill into law, punishing gay people with life imprisonment

Uganda’s president has signed the anti-gay bill into law, unconfirmed reports claim.

After President Yoweri Museveni has given his assent to the Anti-Pornography Bill, gay rights activists on the ground have said the Ugandan government is delaying the announcement of the Anti-Homosexuality Bill.

The bill was previously dubbed the ‘Kill the Gays Bill’. The death penalty has now been dropped but it still punishes ‘aggravated’ homosexuality, including repeat offenders, with life-imprisonment.

February 17, 2014

Ugandan scientists have issued a report about the origins of homosexuality to justify President Yoweri Museveni in signing new anti-gay laws

What kind of science could justify President Yoweri Museveni of Uganda agreeing to sign the Anti-Homosexuality Bill into law?

Well science twisted by politics and ideology. The strange thing about the scientists’ report from Uganda’s Ministry of Health about the origin of homosexuality, is that much of it was right. But what was left out, the way the words were twisted, the flaws in the scientists’ conclusions, make it false.

February 14, 2014

Singer easily beats the likes of Chris Colfer, Ricky Martin, and Steve Grand in annual OUT Magazine poll

Adam Lambert is, by a landslide, the most dateable gay guy on the planet.

That is the verdict, announced today, of the readers of OUT Magazine who chose Lambert from a list of 100 eligible bachelors.

With 21.8% of the vote, the American Idol alum and Grammy nominee took over the top spot that was occupied by his Glee co-star Chris Colfer last year. Colfer slipped down to number 6 in this year's poll.

February 9, 2014

Despite arrests, reported beatings and threats of sexual violence against activists who were detained, the IOC says nothing except that Russia was acting in accordance with its laws

Since the start of the Sochi Olympic Games on Friday, some 61 activists – 24 of them for staging pro-gay demonstrations – have been arrested across Russia. Some of those held in Moscow have reported being beaten while in police custody.

February 8, 2014

Since the Winter Olympics began, Russian police have arrested 61 people for speaking out against the Olympics

61 people have been arrested by the Russian police for speaking out against the Olympics so far.

The New York Times reports that of the 61 arrests, 23 of them were gay rights protestors.

The first of these arrests came yesterday (7 February) when four protesters, one of whom was a pregnant woman, gathered in St. Petersburg to protest the anti-gay laws currently in place in Russia.

They held a flag quoting Principle 6 of the Olympic Charter, which says any form of discrimination is contrary to the ideals of the Olympics.

February 7, 2014

Read the amazing speech from the ‘gay Olympic opening ceremony’ condemning Russian hate and the IOC

An alternative Olympic ceremony has seen a Rainbow Flame lit in Berlin to be tended day and night throughout the games, as a symbol of hope for LGBTI rights in Russia.

Here is an exclusive translation of the speech made by Alfonso Pantisano at the lighting ceremony:

Dear friends, welcome to Potsdamer Platz in Berlin.

February 1, 2014

Charlie Drummond, 2007 Mr Gay UK regional champion and Big Brother Series 10 finalist, has been sentenced to 21 months in prison after he snapped a man’s ankle in an unprovoked assault in Newcastle last April

Charlie Drummond, a former Big Brother finalist and Mr Gay UK regional winner, was yesterday (31 January) found guilty of inflicting grievous bodily harm and sentenced to 21 months behind bars.

On trial at Newcastle Crown Court, the jury heard how Drummond had launched an unprovoked attack which left the victim with a fractured leg and badly dislocated ankle.

January 27, 2014

The openly gay US former basketball star Jason Collins will be among the First Lady's guests at President Barack Obama's State of the Union Speech, leading some to believe the president will highlight his campaign's successes with regards to LGBTI rights

Gay US basketball star Jason Collins, 35, is one of the guests selected to sit with Michelle Obama at President Barack Obama’s State of the Union speech on 28 January.

Collins made history as the first male athlete to come out as gay while playing for a major US team sport in April 2013.

January 26, 2014

Ugandan LGBT activist Edwin Sesange celebrates the life of David Kato three years after his death and calls on President Museveni to recognise the country’s liberation is not complete until gay people also have their freedom

Today, 26 January, President Museveni of Uganda officiates the celebrations to mark the Liberation of Uganda and his 28th year in power. At the same time the Ugandan LGBTI community will be remembering the brutal murder of David Kato, one of the greatest LGBTI rights activists.

Having witnessed the struggle to liberate Uganda by President Museveni and also spending a spell in the struggle against Apartheid in South Africa, David Kato made a brave choice of going back to Uganda in 1998 to liberate the LGBTI people.

January 23, 2014

Russia’s poor human rights record seems to be deterring people from attending the Sochi Winter Olympics with 30% of tickets still unsold just weeks before the games are due to start

With just three weeks to go before the start of the Sochi Winter Olympics, hundreds of thousands of tickets remain unsold for the games in an embarrassment for Russian authorities.

30 percent of tickets remained unsold and it is estimated that only 1 in 4 people attending the games will be non-Russians.

According to International Olympic Committee marketing documents there would be 1.1 million tickets issued for all of the events at the games – indicating that around 300,000 remain unsold.

January 22, 2014

Can two toilets be accused of gay propaganda? Apparently so, as Russia now has to defend itself from jokes from its 'intimate' bathroom situation at the Olympics

As if terrorism threats, accusations of corruption and the international furore over homophobic legislation weren’t enough, Russia now has a new problem.

A Sochi Olympics bathroom is being accused of breaking the ‘gay propaganda’ law.

BBC correspondent Steve Rosenberg tweeted the picture of twin toilets in a single men’s cubicle, saying he was ‘seeing double’ at the Olympic Biathlon Centre.

The snap quickly went viral in Russia and around the world.