Asia

 

 

 

Villagers ‘humiliated’ by India’s first openly LGBTI athlete

‘She should stick to running’ Villagers in the home village of India’s first out athlete say her coming out was ‘humiliating’. Dutee Chand made international headlines in May when she revealed her female partner was her soulmate, making her the first openly LGBTI athlete in India. She is the current national 100m sprint champion. In… Read more »

Indonesia govt official labels LGBTI people ‘main enemy of national development’

Leaders are increasingly whipping up anti-LGBTI hysteria in the country The head of Indonesia’s population and family planning agency has labeled LGBTI citizens the ‘main enemy of national development’. ‘In addition to violating religious rules, these sexual deviations also weaken us’ Nofrijal said on Monday (3 June) according to Ankara. Leaders in Muslim-majority Indonesia have… Read more »

This town that survived a deadly typhoon is now putting on its first Pride

Poverty, rural isolation and natural disasters won’t stop these people putting on the best Pride ever A village in the Philippines which has survived typhoons, poverty and isolation will rise together to host its first Pride. The LGBTI community in San Julian in Eastern Samar is working hard despite a limited budget to put on… Read more »

Japan opposition parties rally in bid to pass marriage equality

Will Japan follow Taiwan in passing same-sex marriage? Major opposition parties in Japan submitted a bill today (3 June) calling for marriage equality. In a move just under a week after Taiwan became the first country in Asia to legalize same-sex marriage, lawmakers are in high hopes, Bloomberg reported. But where the ruling party are… Read more »

Bhutan mulls axing anti-gay law

The Himalayan country’s penal code punishes gay sex with up to one year in prison The Kingdom of Bhutan is considering decriminalizing gay sex as it looks to revise its Penal Code. The mountainous South Asian nation of 700,000 currently criminalizes gay sex. Articles 213 and 214 of the 2004 Penal Code punish same-sex sexual… Read more »

Seoul Queer Culture Festival kicks off in South Korea

Counter-protests from Christian groups take place next to the capital’s premier LGBTI rights event The first day of the Seoul Queer Culture Festival (SQCF) has kicked off in South Korea’s capital on Saturday (1 June). The weekend-long festival will mark the 20th iteration of Seoul’s biggest LGBTI rights event. It follows on from Seoul Pink… Read more »

Li Huanwu’s same-sex marriage: Is this a big deal for LGBTI Singapore?

Lee Kuan Yew’s grandson marrying his boyfriend was big news among Singapore’s LGBTI community, but will it have any effect on the push for LGBTI rights? So, what’s the news in Singapore? Li Huanwu, a member of Singapore’s influential Lee family, married his long-term partner in South Africa last weekend. Congratulations to them! Absolutely. It’s… Read more »

Survey finds 45% believe same-sex marriage inevtiable in Asia-Pacific

And, three-quarters of respondents report improving LGBT rights in their region A survey by the Economist found 45% of respondents in the Asia-Pacific believe same-sex marriage is inevitable in the region. But, 31% of respondents disagreed that same-sex marriage is inevitable. Meanwhile, three-quarters of those surveyed reported a more open climate for LGBT rights compared… Read more »

Court rejects bid to stop South Korea pride

But, homophobic Christian protestors are setting up a counter-demonstration next to the Seoul Queer Culture Festival taking place this weekend A court in the capital of South Korea, Seoul on Thursday (30 May) rejected an application by conservative Christian groups to stop the annual LGBTI pride event this weekend. Anti-LGBTI groups had argued the 20th… Read more »

Pakistan human rights minister hires first trans employee

A huge step for trans citizens in Pakistan The Human Rights Minister in Pakistan has hired a trans woman to her department for the first time. Doctor Shireen Mehrunnisa Mazari announced the appointment yesterday (30 May) on Twitter. Many LGBTI people and allies praised the move. A monumental step in a country where progress for… Read more »

Hong Kong High Court repeals laws criminalizing gay male sex

Breaking: Three other laws remain, but now apply to all people The High Court in Hong Kong immediately repealed four offenses criminalizing gay male sex on Thursday (30 May). Justices reviewed seven offenses total, all part of the Crime Ordinance, and kept three intact after formally revising them. They ultimately found the four offenses unconstitutional… Read more »

Taiwan legalises same-sex marriage in first for Asia

On International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia on Friday (May 17), Taiwan has become the first country in Asia to legalise same-sex marriage. Legislators voted for a government-backed bill that would define a union between a same-sex couple as a marriage. Conservative opponents had proposed rival bills that would define partnerships as “same-sex unions”… Read more »

The tortuous path to gay marriage in Taiwan

Even when gay marriage seemed inevitable, opponents did not give up When taiwan became the first country in Asia to legalise gay marriage on May 17th, it was not only the tens of thousands of rainbow flag-waving demonstrators outside the legislature who cheered. Advocates of equal rights across Asia declared Taiwan a beacon of inspiration.… Read more »

Same-sex discrimination declines

The Cambodian Center for Human Rights (CCHR) released a report on Friday which showed that discrimination against same-sex partners in communities has decreased, but they lack major legal protections. The report, released in conjunction with the May 17 International Day against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia, made numerous references to the 2017 research report entitled Cambodia’s… Read more »

Bangladesh charges extremists over gay activist murders

Dhaka (AFP) – Eight Islamist extremists from a banned group were charged by Bangladesh police on Sunday (May 12) for the 2016 murders of two prominent gay rights activists. Dhaka police’s counter-terrorism unit filed the charge-sheet against the eight men, saying they were members of Ansar al Islam, deputy commissioner of police Mohibul Islam Khan… Read more »

LGBTI group compile ‘Pink List’ of queer-friendly Indian politicians

With over 8,000 candidates, the first vote after homosexuality was decriminalized will be a major one The largest election in history is underway in India, and LGBTI groups are working tirelessly to ensure voters are mindful. In the first election since the decriminalisation of Section 377 India, ‘The Pink List’ is a website compendium of… Read more »

Brunei says it won’t enforce death penalty for gay sex

Brunei has backtracked on enforcing laws introduced last month that would have made sex between men and adultery punishable by stoning to death. Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah on Sunday extended a moratorium on the death penalty to cover the new legislation. The rethink follows global outcry over the laws, including boycotts and celebrity protests. While still… Read more »

Brunei says it won’t enforce death penalty for gay sex

Brunei has backtracked on enforcing laws introduced last month that would have made sex between men and adultery punishable by stoning to death. Sultan Hassanal Bolkiah on Sunday extended a moratorium on the death penalty to cover the new legislation. The rethink follows global outcry over the laws, including boycotts and celebrity protests. While still… Read more »

First hotel owned and run by trans women opens in India

It will also house counseling services and a shelter for trans peopleA group of trans women has realized its dream and will open their own hotel in Kerala, India. The women planned to open the hotel called Hotel Ruchimudra in the state capital of Kochi in south east India. Aditi Achuth, Saya Mathew, Preethi Alexander,… Read more »

Hong Kong judge rules religion should not define what marriage is

Justice Anderson Chow Ka-ming said marriage is an issue of the law, not a ‘social’ one A Hong Kong judge tasked with ruling on whether to allow civil union partnerships for LGBTI couples ruled earlier thisweek (23 April) that religion will not define marriage. Lawyers for the Catholic Diocese of Hong Kong, China – the city’s largest… Read more »

Taiwan’s capital opens process for same-sex marriage

Taiwan will become the first country in Asia to legalize same-sex marriage on 24 May The government of Taiwan’s capital, Taipei, opened bookings for same-sex couples to get married on Tuesday (23 April) . The city government is now taking on-site and telephone bookings for marriage registration, according to the city’s Department of Civil Affairs.… Read more »

Tokyo Rainbow Pride is upon us and here’s how Japan celebrates love

Keep those cherry blossom and rainbow outfit pictures coming Tokyo Rainbow Pride is upon us and here’s what you can do to celebrate Move over, cherry trees. This coming weekend there will be another colorful sight to see in Tokyo, Japan. The capital of the island country will celebrate its LGBTI community with the annual… Read more »

Stop performing operations on intersex children, Indian court rules

The Madras High Court also said a marriage between a man and trans woman was valid The Madras High Court in eastern India on Monday (22 April) made a landmark ruling guaranteeing the rights of transgender and intersex people. It was asked to rule on whether the term ‘bride’ as per the Hindu Marriage Act… Read more »

EU parliament slams Brunei over anti-gay laws

It called laws punishing gay sex with death by stoning ‘retrograde’ but stopped short of introducing sanctions The European Parliament on Thursday (18 April) condemned Brunei’s ‘retrograde’ Islamic laws which punish gay sex with death by stoning. It adopted a resolution that ‘strongly condemns the entry into force of the retrograde Sharia Penal Code; [and]… Read more »

Secrets and crimes: Gay South Korean soldiers trapped in legal bind

Seoul: Productive and driven, he was a model army officer, but he had a secret: He was in a gay sexual relationship with a fellow soldier – a crime under South Korea’s military law. He kept his sexuality hidden from everyone, including friends and family, only meeting his lover off-base and after work. Same-sex acts… Read more »

Azerbaijan police are trying to ‘hunt’ transgender people through internet

Breaking: Reports indicate at least 14 gay and transgender people have been randomly detained in the last 24 hours Azerbaijan police in the country’s capital Baku are reportedly rounding up gay and transgender people and detaining them. According to reports from unnamed LGBTI people in Baku, the random arrests started last night (1 April). Police… Read more »

In the Caucasus, queer people are forced to flee their homes

Provincial communities in the Caucasus are particularly queer-hostile The following is a version of a partner post written by Armine Avetisyan, Nika Musavi, and Dato Parulava that first appeared on the website OC Media. Faced with bullying, discrimination, and violence, queer people in the South Caucasus are frequently forced to flee their homes. Mel from… Read more »

70% of Singaporeans disapprove of same-sex relations, study finds

Religious groups among the most likely to have negative attitudes towards same-sex relationships Almost 70 percent of people in Singapore disapprove of same-sex relationships, a recent study has found. The number of people who disapprove was highest among Singaporean Muslims, Christians and Hindus. The working paper, produced by the Singapore-based think-tank the Institute of Policy… Read more »

Brunei defends new death penalty law for gay sex

Tiny oil-rich nation issues statement pleading “peace” and “respect” Brunei has defended its decision to pass a new Islamic law introducing the death penalty for adultery and homosexuality. The government issued a statement saying it was an independent country and had the right to do as it wished. Brunei said the new law will come… Read more »

In the Caucasus, queer people are forced to flee their homes

Provincial communities in the Caucasus are particularly queer-hostile The following is a version of a partner post written by Armine Avetisyan, Nika Musavi, and Dato Parulava that first appeared on the website OC Media. Faced with bullying, discrimination, and violence, queer people in the South Caucasus are frequently forced to flee their homes. Mel from… Read more »

Indonesian university shuts down student news site over lesbian love story

Students could face up to 12 years in prison under Indonesia’s stringent pornography laws University officials in Indonesia this month ordered a student news website shut down its entire operation after it published a fictional same-sex short story. Student journalists could also face up to 12 years in prison under Indonesia’s draconian pornography law, which… Read more »

Thailand elects first transgender member of parliament

Filmmaker Tanwarin Sukkhapisit was elected to the House of Representatives Thailand on Sunday (24 March) elected its first transgender member of the House of Representatives. It was the first general elections since a military coup in 2014. Filmmaker Tanwarin Sukkhapisit won a seat for the Future Forward Party (FFP). FFP, the biggest challenge to the… Read more »

A Chinese Dating App for Gay Men Is Helping Them Have Kids, Too

Blued’s new service connects men with overseas surrogates. Will China’s government mind? The urge to have a child hit Geng Le hard after age 35. A former cop from China’s Hebei province, he’d launched a gay dating app called Blued a couple of years earlier, in 2012, and had become something of an icon for… Read more »

These are the movies you need to watch to mark same-sex marriage in Taiwan

GagaOOLala, known as ‘Asia’s LGBTI Netflix’, has put together a package of equal marriage flicks Taiwan is set to become the first country in Asia to legalize same sex unions by May 24. To mark the occasion, the region’s first online LGBTI streaming service, GagaOOLala, have chosen 24 movies on the topic. The ‘Go! Marriage… Read more »

Central Asia’s first LGBTI pride march sparks protests

‘We have to beat the craziness out of them’ a member of Kyrgyzstan’s parliament wrote about LGBTI people There’s been threats, protests, and fiery debates in Kyrgyzstan’s parliament after a pro-LGBTI rally earlier this month. In what was believed to be one of the first public LGBTI pride events in Central Asia, 400 people took… Read more »

South Korea’s witch hunt for homosexuals in the military has restarted

Three men serving in the navy are being investigated for engaging in homosexual acts South Korea’s military has resumed its hunt for homosexual servicemen, according to the country’s Military Human Rights Center. Three men serving in the navy are under investigation for engaging in homosexual acts. They face two years in prison under South Korea’s… Read more »

High court in India moves to protect lesbian couple

Although gay sex was decriminalized last year, the couple were facing abuse and threats from family members A high court in India has instructed police to protect a lesbian couple facing abuse from their family and people in living in their village. It is one of a handful of such judgments since India dramatically decriminalized… Read more »

Mr Gay World India 2019 Suresh Ramdas On Coming Out, Sec 377, And Being Tall Dark And Handsome

The pageant Mr. Gay World India has risen to popularity in the past few years. This year, the winner was Suresh Ramdas, a Bengaluru-based techie. We spoke to him about his success, his thoughts on the Section 377 ruling, and his future plans: What kind of a childhood did you have? Did you grow up… Read more »

Pride organizers in South Korea urge police to protect their rights

Seoul’s 20th Queer Culture Festival will kick off in May amid rising violence from conservative Christian groups Organizers of the largest LGBTI pride event in South Korea urged the government not to give in to conservative groups and protect attendees. The 20th Queer Culture Festival will take place in May, including a parade on June… Read more »

All aboard Bangkok’s first pride cruise

Southeast Asia’s LGBT party capital just went next level Bangkok next month will launch the country’s first LGBTI pride cruise. Setting sail on 3 March, the boat party along the Chao Praya river will feature performances and international DJs. Pangina Heals—a judge on RuPaul’s Drag Race Thailand—is also slated to perform. What’s more, Bangkok Indie… Read more »