Federal Judge Rules That Title VII Covers Sexual Orientation Discrimination

A federal judge in Pittsburgh on Thursday ruled that Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 protects against discrimination based on sexual orientation. The United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) is representing Dale Baxley in his claim that Scott Medical Health Center of Pittsburgh created a sexually hostile work environment because he’s… Read more »

82,000 Join Taiwan LGBT Pride Parade; Justice Minister Calls For Marriage Equality

Over 80,000 people on Saturday marched in Taiwan’s largest LGBT Pride parade. According to The China Post, attendance at Taipei’s 14th annual parade increased from 78,000 last year to 82,000 this year. Marchers dressed in colorful costumes and waived rainbow flags as they paraded in front of Taiwan’s presidential palace. One marcher waved a sign… Read more »

Death of gay professor may lead to same-sex marriage in Taiwan

Jacques Picoux’s death was described as a ‘pivotal moment’ by LGBT activists in the country. Seen by many as one of the most progressive countries in Asia on LGBT rights, Taiwan is yet to introduce marriage equality, allowing only limited recognition of same-sex relationships. The government’s slow progress on the issue has been felt by… Read more »

HIV is growing so fast among Chinese youth that a university is selling testing kits in vending machines

As a growing number of young people (link in Chinese) become infected with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) in China, a Chinese university in a high-risk area has started selling HIV testing kits in vending machines. The kits, which cost less than $5, are sold alongside snacks and drinks in the machines at China’s Southwest Petroleum… Read more »

China’s first-ever Gay Games team could be the largest delegation ever

China plans to participate in its first-ever Gay Games in Paris in 2018, and they are already poised to dominate — at least in terms of sheer numbers. “With already 20 registrations for badminton, swimming, volleyball, marathon, bike, track, triathlon and other sports, Team China is aiming to bring the largest delegation ever to participate… Read more »

India arrested hundreds last year under colonial-era anti-gay law

Hundreds of people were arrested last year under India’s Colonial era anti-gay law. Homosexuality is illegal in India under freshly-reinstated Section 377 of the penal code, originally based on outdated British law. The century-old law was brought back into effect by India’s Supreme Court in 2013, outlawing “carnal intercourse against the order of nature”. The… Read more »

China Grapples With HIV Cases Among Gay Men, but Stigma Runs Deep

Surge in infections worries health authorities and prompts soul-searching in conservative society Beijing—A health report from a southeastern corner of China has brought a disturbing truth into the open: HIV infections are growing rapidly among young, gay Chinese men. The trend is worrying health authorities—and prompting criticism of their efforts to respond—in a country that… Read more »

What’s behind Indonesian authorities’ desire to control LGBT sexuality?

Indonesia’s LGBT community has been weathering “unprecedented attacks” through hateful public comments by top public officials since early this year. But the biggest threat yet has come recently in a legal move by a conservative group, the Family Love Alliance (AILA), to criminalise any sexual activity outside marriage. The Constitutional Court is deliberating the alliance’s… Read more »

“No struggles, but also no joys:” What it’s like growing up gay in China

“What’s like growing up in China being gay?” This is often the first serious question I get when someone I’ve just met discovers I’m gay and grew up in mainland China. I understand their curiosity—the concept can seem almost oxymoronic. In totalitarian China, where everything is reined under the tight leash of the Communist Party,… Read more »

Beyond Legal Progress: The Reality of LGBT Discrimination in Vietnam

Over a year on from Vietnam’s lifting of bans on same-sex marriage ceremonies, advancements in the rights of LGBT citizens throughout the Southeast Asian region seem to have stagnated, and indeed in some cases, regressed. In Thailand, the recognition of a “third gender” in its constitution is a victory for its transgender citizens, but legal… Read more »

China’s gay rights charade

On Monday, Qiu Bai, a 22-year-old student from the city of Guangzhou, China, took the Chinese Ministry of Education to court in Beijing to demand that it change the way college textbooks talk about homosexuality. Right now, most of them call it a disease. The trial went mostly as Qiu had expected. A government official… Read more »

Student Challenges Homosexuality ‘Disorder’ Textbooks In China

A gay Chinese student is challenging her government over school textbooks that describe homosexuality as a mental disorder. Gay sex is not illegal in China and homosexuality was delisted as a mental disorder in 2001. Twenty-one-year-old Qiu Bai, a student at Sun Yat-Sen University in Guangzhou, told Reuters that “40 percent of the psychology and… Read more »

Indonesian police want gay dating app ban

Jakarta – Indonesian police said Friday they want a ban on gay dating apps in the world’s most populous Muslim-majority country after a paedophile ring allegedly used popular service Grindr to pimp boys. It was the latest move by Indonesian authorities against homosexuals, who have faced a sudden backlash this year, with the government recently… Read more »

A Push To Decriminalize Homosexuality

Sashini, a transgender woman in Colombo, has formally petitioned the National Human Rights Commission to urge the government to recognize her as female by issuing her official documents that reflect her lived gender. A strong push is being made to decriminalise homosexuality in Sri Lanka and to provide greater protection for all sexual minorities. Efforts… Read more »

Secrets and Suspicion in Uzbekistan

Sept. 1 marked Uzbekistan’s 25th year of independence and the first national celebration of it without the president, Islam Karimov, in attendance. A few days earlier, the Uzbek government announced that Mr. Karimov, 78, had suffered a serious brain hemorrhage — an unusual proclamation considering pronouncements about his health were often as glowing as those… Read more »

[DASH of SAS] ‘Mercy’ sex in Iloilo

‘They are transitional men. They engage in sex transactionally, on a case-to-case basis, or maybe when the need arises’ Raj, Popoy, Jeo, and Makoy* share many things, as many good friends do. They share the same interests like going out as a barkada, video games, and girls. The 4 boys share the same neighborhood and… Read more »

For Nguyen Hai Yen, it all started with the need to find a connection. As a queer woman living in Vietnam during the early 2000s, it was easy to feel like she was the only one.

At a time when being gay or queer was still considered by many in the country a “social evil” on par with drug use and prostitution, coming out in Vietnam wasn’t necessarily the easiest thing to do. So Yen decided to turn to the one place she knew of to try and find a connection… Read more »

Vietnam’s LGBTQ Movement Is in Full Bloom

For Nguyen Hai Yen, it all started with the need to find a connection. As a queer woman living in Vietnam during the early 2000s, it was easy to feel like she was the only one. At a time when being gay or queer was still considered by many in the country a “social evil”… Read more »

Hundreds of LGBT and supporters rally in Kathmandu

The marchers, who supported the rights of sexual minorities, carried banners saying, “We should not be deprived of our rights. We demand implementation of the rights guaranteed by the new constitution.” About a thousand members of sexual minorities and their supporters paraded in Nepal’s capital on Friday, to demand equality and implementation of their rights… Read more »

A Happy Warrior in a Faltering Battle for Indonesian Gay Rights

Surabaya, Indonesia — After the United States Supreme Court legalized same-sex marriage last year, a leading Indonesian television station held a prime-time debate about whether this Muslim-majority democracy should do the same. On one side of the stage stood a conservative Muslim theologian and a member of Parliament, both of whom strongly rejected the idea… Read more »

Indonesia has ‘no room’ for LGBT community says president’s spokesperson

The spokesperson for the president of Indonesia has said that the country has “no room” for the LGBT community. Amid reports of an unprecedented amount of anti-LGBT attacks in Indonesia, Johan Budi, the spokesman for the president, has said there is “no room” for the LGBT community. He said, “Rights of citizens like going to… Read more »

Georgian President blocks referendum on constitutional gay marriage ban

The Georgian President has shot down a proposed referendum on a new constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage. A petition calling for the referendum in the country had gathered 200,000 signatures. However, in a press conference this week, Georgian President Giorgi Margvelashvili flatly rejected the proposal to hold a referendum that would constitutionally define marriage as… Read more »

Risqué business: first Mr Gay China shows new, more public face of LGBT

Meng Fanyu has been voted China’s first ever Mr Gay, after a previous attempt to hold the competition in 2010 was shut down In a smoky, strobe-lit nightclub in south Shanghai, Meng Fanyu strides out on stage wearing a theatrical get-up of top hat, bow tie and black eyeliner. To the delight of a roaring… Read more »

Queer life undercover in South Asia

We Were Lounging on oversized floor cushions in my parents’ living room in Karachi when my friend Ali Mehdi Zaidi told me he was moving to London. The talented photographer said he couldn’t stand living as a gay man in Pakistan, where the gay scene was too focused on one-night stands, abuse, and subterfuge. He… Read more »

China: Progress on LGBTI rights. But more to do

Public opinion shifting to accept LGBTI people & equal rights Peter Tatchell, Director of the Peter Tatchell Foundation, writes: LGBTI rights in China are moving in the right direction, slowly. The country’s ancient history and literature is scattered with references to gay men, such as Emperor Ai who, legend has it, cut off his sleeve… Read more »

What It’s Like Growing Up Gay in Afghanistan

Whether Omar Mateen was gay or had any kind of sexual feelings for other men, same-sex attraction in Afghanistan, where his family was from, is shrouded in its own mystery. We were sitting on the cliffs as darkness fell, obscuring our view of the niches across from us where the giant Buddhas had for centuries… Read more »

Japan election manifestos free LGBT rights from political closet

When openly gay independent candidate Wataru Ishizaka campaigned for a 2007 Tokyo local election, people snickered at his speeches, but now even Japan’s conservative ruling party mentions gay rights in its platform for this year’s upper house election. Though the paragraph is deep in the manifesto of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s Liberal Democratic Party (LDP)… Read more »

India’s Supreme Court refuses to hear petition against gay sex ban

India’s Supreme Court has refused to hear a petition challenging a law criminalising gay sex. India’s Supreme Court refused to hear a petition challenging Section 377, India’s penal code, which prohibits “carnal intercourse against the order of nature with any man, woman or animal.” The court’s decision is a major setback for LGBT rights activists… Read more »

Pakistani Clerics Declare Transgender Marriages Legal

Karachi, Pakistan (Reuters) – A group of clerics in Pakistan has declared marriage between transgender individuals permissible in Islam, saying they have a right to be buried in Muslim ceremonies, according to a copy of a religious edict Reuters obtained on Monday. Transgender people also have full rights under Islamic inheritance law, the Tanzeem Ittehad-i-Ummat… Read more »

China ‘bans Lady Gaga’ after Dalai Lama meeting

Communist party’s propaganda department reportedly issues ‘important instruction’ blocking singer’s entire repertoire from mainland Lady Gaga has reportedly been added to a list of hostile foreign forces banned by China’s Communist party after she met with the Dalai Lama to discuss yoga. The American pop singer, who has sold more than 27m albums, met the… Read more »

Sexual identity and behavior in an online sample of Indian men who have sex with men

Abstract Indian men who have sex with men are disproportionately impacted by HIV. While prevention efforts to date have focused on men who visit drop-in centers or physical cruising sites, little is known about men who are meeting sexual partners on virtual platforms. This paper explores issues related to sexual identity and sexual behaviors in… Read more »

Increasing the visibility of LGBTS in China

Beijing – With the growth of social media, there is much more information on the community today, but they are still fighting for their legal rights. When his fellow playmates wrote love letters to girls, Devin Ji Guangyu, then 12 or 13, did the same, but also found boys to be attractive. He looked up… Read more »

Bangladesh Says It Now Knows Who’s Killing the Bloggers

Dhaka, Bangladesh — The young man, inching past a crowded checkpoint near a truck stand in Bangladesh’s capital, caught the attention of an alert police officer. His backpack, together with his appearance, from the unshaven beard to the long Punjabi tunic over baggy pants, set off the suspicion that he was an Islamist militant. The… Read more »

Korean lesbian thriller breaks box office records

Lesbian Korean thriller ‘The Handmaiden’ has broken South Korea’s box office records. 1.8 million people flocked to cinemas to see the R-rated film, directed by Park Chan-Wook, in just one week. This beats ‘Deadpool’, which previously held the record for the biggest audience, with 1.7 million people seeing it over the same period. 2015 film,… Read more »

‘People Like Us’ – never prouder, never more real

First gay online series in Singapore gives a glimpse into the lives of gay men in a country where sex between two men is still a crime Just yesterday morning, while I was doing the usual scroll through my Facebook feed, I was alerted to a news article – the Ministry of Health in Singapore… Read more »

Inside Mongolia’s Only Gay Bar

At the only gay bar in the most sparsely populated independent country in the world, Zorig Alima tells me he’s a “penis shaman.” The proprietor of d.d/h.z says he can confidently predict men’s penis sizes and sexual predilections. He gives my companion a disputable “reading,” and dashes away to tend to friends and customers, explaining,… Read more »

Neo-Nazi thugs pelt pro-gay vegan café with sausages

Far-right thugs have attacked a vegan café with sausages in Georgia – because they serve gay people. The attack took place in the Georgian capital of Tbilisi, in Eastern Europe. The vegan Kiwi Café, which is popular with the local LGBT community, found itself set upon by Neo-Nazis, who had allegedly asked passers by about… Read more »

How many MSM with HIV are there in Ulaanbaatar?

Since the identification of its first HIV case in 1992, Mongolia has had continued low prevalence of HIV. According to MOHS sources, as of May 2016, Mongolia had a cumulative number of 212 identified cases of HIV. Mongolian men who have sex with men and transgender people bear the brunt of these cases. The 2014… Read more »

UK government ‘raises LGBT rights concerns’ with Bangladesh

The UK government has raised concerns with Bangladesh after a gay journalist was murdered by terror-affiliated groups. Xulhaz Mannan, the editor of Bangladesh’s only LGBT magazine Roopban, was hacked to death alongside friend Mahbub Tonoy last month, in the latest of a string of killings. An affiliate of terrorist group Al-Qaeda has claimed responsibility for… Read more »

South Korea fails to recognise same-sex marriage

A lawsuit filed by a prominent South Korean couple has been dismissed by authorities. A lawsuit filed by a prominent gay film director and his partner seeking legal status for their same-sex marriage was rejected by a South Korean district court yesterday in the first case of its kind. Movie director Kim Jho Gwang-Soo and… Read more »