China, Asia

China, is the largest country in East Asia and the most populous in the world with over 1.3 billion people, approximately a fifth of the world's population. It is a socialist republic ruled by the Communist Party of China under a single-party system. Since the introduction of market-based economic reforms in 1978, the poverty rate in the PRC has decreased from 53% in 1981 to 8% in 2001. Censorship of political speech and information is openly and routinely used to silence criticism of government and the ruling Chinese Communist Party. A number of foreign governments and NGOs routinely criticize the PRC, alleging widespread civil rights violations including systematic use of lengthy detention without trial, forced confessions, torture, mistreatment of prisoners, restrictions of freedom of speech, assembly, association, religion, the press, and labor rights. Regarding homosexuality, sodomy was decriminalized in 1997, and the new Chinese Classification and Diagnostic Criteria of Mental Disorders removed homosexuality from its list of mental illnesses in 2001. The situation has continued to evolve. There is no explicit law against homosexuality, neither are there laws protecting gays from discrimination, nor are there any gay rights organizations in China. It is believed that the Chinese policy towards gay issues remains the "Three nos": no approval, no disapproval, and no promotion. An Internet survey in 2000 showed that Chinese people are becoming more tolerant towards homosexuals. 

 

News & Reports:

 

WHO: ‘China is witnessing an evolving HIV epidemic’

With an estimated 800,000 people living in China with HIV/AIDS, the WHO’s country representative Bernhard Schwartlaender tells DW the nation needs to do more to prevent infection and eliminate stigma and discrimination. Around the world, there were around 35 million people living with HIV in 2013, and 2.1 million people becoming newly infected, according to… Read more »

Being gay in China: Does the rainbow flag fly free?

Editor’s note: In this month’s episode of On China join Kristie Lu Stout for a revealing conversation with China’s leading gay rights advocates. The show premieres at 5:30pm Hong Kong time on Thursday. For other air times please click here. Beijing (CNN) — In this narrow Beijing hutong, the rainbow flag flies free. I’m in… Read more »

Gay-dating app finds financial boost

A former policeman who founded a dating app for gay men said he wanted to liberate fellow homosexuals across the world after the app pulled in $30 million in third-round financing. Geng Le, founder of Blued, made the high-profile announcement after Apple CEO Tim Cook acknowledged his homosexuality, which Geng said was a great encouragement.… Read more »

China: Gay rights activists in Macau demand domestic violence bill includes gay couples

Gay rights activists in Macau have delivered a letter to the government headquarters, demanding same-sex couples to be re-introduced into the domestic violence bill. Rainbow of Macau – the city’s first gay rights group – was founded after gay couples were dropped from the legislation in November 2012. In the letter addressed to Justice Secretary… Read more »

Chinese HIV vaccine finishes safety testing

A new HIV/AIDS vaccine, developed by Chinese scientists, has completed its safety testing stage, the results of which will soon be submitted to the Chinese authorities, experts said during the 2014 National Conference on HIV/AIDS held in Beijing on Tuesday. Shao Yiming, AIDS expert at the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention, told the… Read more »

Gay rights storm in Beijing as senior British diplomat marries boyfriend at ambassador’s residence

It had all the hallmarks of a traditional British wedding with a three-tier cake, bagpipes, a garden party and even “Keep Calm and Marry On” orders of service, but the Beijing wedding ceremony of a senior British diplomat to his male partner has sparked a fierce debate over gay rights in China. On Saturday Brian… Read more »

Chinese man sues gay ‘cure’ clinic after electric shock treatments

A man hopes to have the practice of gay “cure” therapy banned in China, as he is suing a clinic which performed electroshock treatment on him. The 30-year-old man who has only been identified by his pseudonym Xiao Zhen, filed his lawsuit back in July. It is the first of its kind, and is hoped… Read more »

Chinese society still far from accepting gays, lesbians

China: Despite the LGBT community beginning to be more active in China, society is still far from accepting them without discrimination says activists and social surveys “It’s a lot of pressure for gays to hide their real identity,” says Geng Le, founder of China’s largest dating app for Chinese gay guys. “Once you reach a… Read more »

Peaches and Sleeves: A History of Homosexuality in China

June is gay pride month, with worldwide festivities of parades, parties and remembrance marking the occasion. Major cities in China, including Shanghai and Beijing, are celebrating gay pride month in their own unique ways. The issue of human rights, and the contemporary struggle of homosexuals the world over for acceptance and integration, is a central… Read more »

China: students vulnerable to HIV/AIDS

China’s gay students aged 15 to 24 are increasingly vulnerable to HIV/AIDS and hence in need of a more targeted approach to curb the spread of infection, says a senior health official. “To contain the spread of HIV among youths, more forceful and targeted approaches are urgently needed, such as large-scale screening projects — like… Read more »

Gay sex poses HIV threat for youth

More targeted approaches are needed to fight the increasing threat of HIV/AIDS among Chinese students aged 15 to 24, a senior health official said. “To contain the spread of HIV among youths, more forceful and targeted approaches are urgently needed, such as large-scale screening projects — like the one being carried out in Henan province… Read more »

Chinese women find self emancipation in male gay erotica

China’s hugely popular male gay erotic stories are written mostly by women who project their wish for emancipation on gay community, say social analysts. ‘‘I think Chinese culture is still harsh on women in terms of how far they can go in developing a fantasy life or erotic art forms,’’ Katrien Jacobs, a Chinese researcher… Read more »

Beijing court agrees to hear gay ‘conversion therapy’ lawsuit

A Beijing court has agreed to hear a case against a Chinese clinic offering gay “conversion therapy” a move that activists hope will usher in an era or tolerance. The court has agreed to proceed with the lawsuit against Chongqing-based Xin Yu Piao Xiang for offering to turn gay men straight through hypnosis and also… Read more »

Beijing court agrees to hear gay ‘conversion therapy’ lawsuit

China: A Beijing court has agreed to hear a case against a Chinese clinic offering gay “conversion therapy” a move that activists hope will usher in an era or tolerance. The court has agreed to proceed with the lawsuit against Chongqing-based Xin Yu Piao Xiang for offering to turn gay men straight through hypnosis and… Read more »

Beijing police detain nine activists meeting to discuss anti-gay discrimination

Beijing police May 7 detained as many as nine civil society activists meeting for a seminar to discuss obstacles facing gay groups wishing to register as nongovernmental organizations in China. The group had advertised itself as an event examining “civil society and the state,” reported sinosphere.blogs.nytimes.com. The report suspects that the arrests and detention were… Read more »

Nepal: Increased Pressure from China Threatens Tibetans

Authorities Increase Surveillance and Abuses Against Refugees (Kathmandu) – Nepal has imposed increasing restrictions on Tibetans living in the country as a result of strong pressure from China, Human Rights Watch said in a new report published today. The new Nepali government should make it clear to China that it will accept Tibetans who flee… Read more »

13 arrested at gay orgy in Guangzhou

Guangzhou police have charged five men with ‘group licentiousness’ after they busted a gay sex club at a residential flat in Tianhe district of Guangzhou. The online sex club has nearly 3000 members. The organiser, surnamed Wang, is a 37-year-old from Chongqing and was among those charged. It appears that Wang started the “Comrade Wins… Read more »

Chinese students send 3,000 letters to urge lawmakers to legalize same-sex marriage

He didn’t get a response after sending 100 letters to lawmakers last year, so he roped in 20 other students to send 2,900 more letters this time Liang Wenhui, a graduate student from Guangdong University of Foreign Studies and founder of Chinese Gay-Straight Alliance, with the help of other students wrote and posted 3,000 individually-addressed… Read more »

Chinese activist suing Hunan provincial department over refusal to register gay rights group

Chinese LGBTI rights activist Xiang Xiaohan is suing Hunan Province’s Department of Civil Affairs for discrimination after it refused to allow him to register a gay rights advocacy group because it said homosexuality was against Chinese social norms Chinese LGBTI rights activist Xiang Xiaohan filed a lawsuit on Wednesday against the Department of Civil Affairs… Read more »

Activists send complaints about shocking gay conversion therapy in China

‘Psychologists’ use force, electric shock or even medical operation to convert gays and bisexuals Two LGBTI campaigners have sent complaint letters about extreme gay conversion treatment found in 10 cities. The activists reported the malpractice to health and business authorities in cities including Beijing, Guangzhou, Shenzhen and Changsha on Wednesday (Dec 4), the Chinese news… Read more »

Homosexuality ‘Against Spiritual Civilization,’ Hunan Government Says

When the government refused a request by Xiang Yuhan, a gay rights activist in the central province of Hunan, to set up a nongovernmental organization for homosexuals, he demanded an explanation under freedom of information rules. Stamped with the red star of the state, the response came: Homosexuality was “against spiritual civilization construction” and “in… Read more »

China’s First Lady hears call from mothers for greater acceptance of LGBTIs

China’s First Lady Peng Liyuan, a World Health Organization (WHO) Goodwill Ambassador for Tuberculosis and HIV/AIDS, has received a plea for more tolerance for LGBTIs in China from a group of Chinese mothers with gay children The wife of People’s Republic of China President Xi Jinping has received a letter from a group of Chinese… Read more »

Beijing LGBT Center celebrates 5th anniversary

Beijing’s LGBT Center has released a short documentary on its work to celebrate the organization’s 5th anniversary The Beijing LGBT Center has produced a 14 minute documentary about the organization’s work and trials and tribulations during its first 5 years to celebrate its 5th anniversary. In the video, ‘From Me to We – 5 Years… Read more »

China’s Beijing Queer Film Festival concludes without government interference for the first time, say organisers

In a statement issued on June 27, the Beijing Queer Film Festival Organization Committee said: 23 June 2013. A small courtyard café near Andingmen, Beijing, is packed to the brim with a colourful bunch of people who have all come to witness the closing ceremony of the sixth Beijing Queer Film Festival. In its 13-year-long… Read more »

China’s Beijing Queer Film Festival concludes without government interference for the first time, say organisers

The festival marked the close of the 5-day, 28-film run last month at a small crowded cafe near Andingmen, Beijing with more cheer as usual as organisers report that this year marks the first time in its 13-year history that none of their events were disrupted nor did they have to engage in a cat… Read more »

Beijing screens queer films for Pride month

Film screenings in Beijing tonight, tomorrow and Sunday look at transgender issues, bisexuality, gay life and censorship in China Beijing’s Queer Comrades (LGBT filmmakers and website) is screening a series of movies in the next few days for Pride month. Tonight the Beijing American Center is hosting a screening of three films and a Q&A… Read more »

In China, LGBT citizens seek acceptance

Beijing (CNN) — In a victory for same-sex marriage supporters, the United States Supreme Court struck down the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) in a 5-to-4 decision. The law had denied federal recognition to same-sex couples. On the other side of the world, in China, the fight for gay rights is making progress. It is… Read more »

A queer state

This midsummer’s weekend, hundreds of Beijingers enjoyed ales and pies at the second annual craft-beer festival. The Beijing LGBT Centre, a non-profit organisation (for lesbians, gays, bisexuals and transgender people), had a stall there too, where they handed out T-shirts and answered questions (pictured to the right). This in itself was a small victory—the venue… Read more »

ideo of biggest gay pride parade in China released

Queer Comrades congratulate Changsha Pride for ‘courage’ after the biggest LGBT pride march in China Queer Comrades website, China’s ‘LGBT TV channel’, has released a video about last month’s pride march in Changsha, Henan province. It was the biggest LGBT pride parade in China so far, after Changsha Pride debuted on a much smaller scale… Read more »

China: 81-year-old inspired by Pride march to appeal rape conviction

An 81-year-old war veteran charged with raping 11 of his fellow workers during the rise of Mao Zedong says he has been inspired by a Pride march to defend himself for having had consensual sex with men. The man, known only by his surname, Li, said he read in the news about a Pride march… Read more »

Human rights in China

On May 14, the Information Office of the State Council—China’s cabinet—published Progress in China’s Human Rights in 2012. The cabinet’s white paper assesses human rights achievements through the lens of development: “Development is the key to solving all existing problems and facilitating progress of human rights in China.” The report reviews economic and social achievements… Read more »

Queer fest screens films from ‘homophobic’ China

Queer films from China, made under strict censorship and fear of reprisal from a “homophobic government”, will play in the city over the next few days as part of the fourth edition of the Kashish International Queer Film Festival that kicked off on Wednesday. This year, the festival’s country focus is on China, with two… Read more »

Gay rights activist arrested after protest in Changsha

Police in Changsha have detained a young gay rights activist after he organised a protest in the capital of Hunan province to mark International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia and Transphobia. A 19-year-old man, identified only as Xiang, was arrested on Saturday and will be in administrative detention for 12 days for organising an “illegal protest”,… Read more »

China arrests gay activists during IDAHO events

LGBT rights advocates have been detained in at least two cities in China while engaging in IDAHO activities LGBT rights advocates were detained in at least two Chinese cities when celebrating the International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia and Transphobia (IDAHO). Officers detained about a dozen LGBT advocates who were handing flyers about IDAHO in a… Read more »

Gay Activists Press for Rights in China

Beijing — While the United States Supreme Court considers whether gay men and women have the right to marry, debate on the issue also is growing in China. Gay rights activists in that nation increasingly are vocal about the right to marry and live free from discrimination. Xiao Tie works at Beijing’s LGBT [Lesbian, Gay,… Read more »

Same-sex behaviour in ancient China differs from modern understanding: Richard Burger

Richard Burger, author of Behind the Red Door: Sex in China, explains in an interview that same-sex behaviour in ancient China differs from the modern understanding of homosexuality. China View reports: “The Chinese history of homosexuality has undergone a dramatic trajectory. In contemporary China, homosexuality wasn’t decriminalized until 1997. And in 2001, it was removed… Read more »

China’s Gays and Lesbians Join the Global Debate on Same-Sex Marriage

In a country where homosexuality was illegal until just 16 years ago and classed as a mental illness until 2001, advocates for gay rights in China complain that attitudes toward their community are years behind those in Western countries. But like their counterparts everywhere, Chinese gays and lesbians are fired up by the growing global… Read more »

Iceland PM’s visit inspires China lesbian couple to ‘marry’

Beijing: Busy shoppers in Guangzhou city of South China were surprised on Wednesday to see a lesbian couple seeking their blessings as they held their wedding. The couple said they were inspired by this week’s China visit of Iceland Prime Minister Johanna Sigurdardottir, a self-proclaimed lesbian who is engaged in a same-sex marriage. The girl… Read more »

Male-On-Male Intimate Partner Violence And Sexual Risk Behaviors Among Money Boys And Other MSM In Shanghai, China

Abstract Background: Intimate partner violence (IPV) is known to increase HIV risk among heterosexual women, but less is known about IPV and HIV among men who have sex with men (MSM), with almost no data from non-Western countries. This study examined the prevalence of IPV and links between IPV and HIV risks among MSM in… Read more »

Iceland PM asked to meet with gay rights activists in Chinese visit

Iceland’s prime minister has been asked to meet with the parents of gay children during her visit to China. Johanna Sigurdardottir, the world’s first openly gay prime minister, is due in the country next week. The Xinhua news agency reports Sigurdardottir and her wife Jonina Leosdottir have been asked to meet with members of PFLAG… Read more »