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May 15, 2013

A new United Nations video sends a clear message: LGBT rights are human rights and abuse of gay and trans people is against international law

The UN Human Rights office has released a new video telling LGBT people they are not alone and promising to work for their protection and freedom.

It reminds viewers that 76 countries still criminalize consensual same-sex relationships and lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people everywhere continue to suffer violent attacks and discriminatory treatment.

March 14, 2013

Rights group tell UN Human Rights Council to take action against homophobia, following its ongoing discussion of a report on the matter

A report by the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (UNHCR) currently debated by the UN Human Rights Council found that discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation and gender identity remains widespread and persistent throughout the world.

The council is due to pass a resolution on the matter next week, and human rights groups have urged it to take a strong stand against discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation and gender identity.

February 1, 2013

UN rights experts advise Russian Duma to scrap bill on ‘homosexuality propaganda’

A group of United Nations independent human rights experts called on Russian lawmakers to scrap the law against ‘homosexual propaganda’.

The group call upon the lower house of the Russian parliament, today (1 Feburary) to drop the bill that imposes severe penalties and which has already been approved by the State Duma.

December 6, 2012

Seminar organized by Philippine Judicial Academy and the US's Department of Justice teaches judges about LGBT rights

Twelve regional and family court judges from all over the Philippines learnt how to better protect the rights of LGBT citizens at a roundtable discussion sponsored by the US Department of Justice last week in Manila

During the one-day seminar titled Roundtable Discussion: Knowledge Sharing on the Protection of the Rights of the LGBT Sector, community activists and experts spoke about the human rights of sexual orientation and gender identity (sogi) minorities in the Philippines.

November 25, 2012

For the first time, the United Nations acknowledges a need for protections from executions on the basis of gender identity.
 

The UN has approved a draft resolution urging member states to protect LGBT people from executions and other murders.

The resolution is meant to hold states accountable to investigating all extrajudicial executions, and for the first time pressures states to properly address crimes committed on the basis of people's 'gender identity'.

Introduced by Sweden and co-sponsored by 34 states, the resolution passed by a vote of 108 to 1, with 65 abstentions and Iran as the only country opposed.

September 10, 2012

United Nations Secretary General praises first controversial Human Rights Council debate on LGBT issues and wants more

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has called for more work to be done on ‘discrimination and violence’ towards gay, bi and trans people.

Speaking in Geneva today to the United Nation’s Human Rights Council (HRC), he highlighted the first debate the HRC held on the issue earlier in March.

September 6, 2012

Focus group with LGBT community leaders discusses how to educate judges who rule on cases that affect gay and trans people

Last weekend in Manilla steps were taken towards ensuring that court judges in the Philippines are better informed about LGBT issues.

The Philippine Judicial Academy (PHILJA), supported by the overseas program of the United States Department of Justice Criminal Division, hosted a focus group about how and what judges should know about LGBT issues.

PHILJA’s chancellor, former Supreme Court judge Adolfo Azcuna, said the initiative was important because judges often have to rule on cases that affect the dignity and equality of LGBT people.

July 3, 2012

United Nations ambassadors of South Africa and Brazil call for action on sexual orientation and gender identity as universal human rights and want to combat hate crimes

South Africa and Brazil have told the United Nations they want more action on lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender rights.

The statement was delivered yesterday (2 July) to the United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva by the ambassador of South Africa on behalf of both countries.

The statement demanded further discussion and work on the issue of violence against LGBT people and said gay and trans rights are part and parcel of the universal declaration of human rights.

June 12, 2012

The European Court of Human Rights' ruling against Moldova hailed as 'important victory'

Moldova has been reprimanded by the European Court of Human Rights for banning gay campaigners from holding a peaceful protest outside the country's parliament.

In 2005, the Chisinau Municipal Council and the Mayor’s office rejected GENDERDOC-M’s application to peacefully demonstrate in front of the Moldovan Parliament, calling for the adoption of laws protecting sexual minorities.

The denial was later upheld by the country's Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court of Justice.

May 25, 2012

Moldova has adopted a law on equality today, but it has left the gay, bi and trans community as second-class citizens

Moldova adopted a new equality law today but it has left lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender citizens still at the bottom of the pecking order.

Although the law is a positive step forward towards equality, international LGBT rights group, ILGA-Europe, is highly concerned sexual orientation is not explicitly mentioned in the list of grounds of discrimination covered by the law, apart from in relation to discrimination in the workplace.

This lack of clarity leaves members of Moldova’s LGBT community at risk of discrimination in other arenas.

May 3, 2012

Annual report on human rights and democracy outlines steps UK took to promote LGBT rights abroad. Diplomats will continue the pressure despite a backlash

Britain will continue fighting for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender rights around the globe despite a backlash for some countries.

That's the pledge the Foreign and Commonwealth Office gave Gay Star News as it released an annual report on human rights.

The report on human rights and democracy was launched by foreign minister William Hague and has an LGBT section.

It outlines some of the activities and diplomatic positions taken by the foreign office in 2011 to protect and promote global LGBT rights.

March 8, 2012

UN panel discussion on LGBT rights hailed as 'milestone' but activists say public opinion must change as well as laws

Human rights groups have welcomed yesterday's historic UN debate on LGBT rights, despite walk-outs from several nations.

The panel discussion in Geneva, Switzerland, on discrimination and violence against LGBT people, marked the first time the UN Human Rights Council has focused on gender identity and sexual orientation.

March 5, 2012

From the US to Japan, LGBT rights advocates urge the world to tune into the UN Human Rights Council’s panel discussion on LGBT discrimination on Wednesday

The first openly gay man to be elected in Japan, a Nigerian exile and human rights defender in London, a Chilean gay rights activist, an Australian local politician, an organiser of Athens Pride and Poland’s first gay elected official have all added their names to a letter congratulating the UN for holding a panel this Wednesday, 7 March, to discuss discrimination and violence against LGBT people.

The panel will be the first time the UN Human Rights Council has focused on human rights, gender identity and sexual orientation.