Europe

 

 

 

Unrest feared as Poland Catholic church doubles down on anti-gay rhetoric

In a sermon marking the 75th anniversary of Warsaw’s uprising against Nazis, the archbishop of Krakow said Poland is under siege from a “rainbow plague.” Warsaw — Poland’s Catholic Church has doubled down on the anti-gay rhetoric that has become the nationalist ruling party’s dominant theme in recent weeks, drawing a rebuke from liberal politicians… Read more »

‘We need freedom’: Sehaq, the party space for Amsterdam’s queer refugees

As well as contending with racism, queer refugees face homophobia and transphobia – even from their fellow refugees. One Dutch group is trying to carve out a safe space At the dinner table, conversations bubble around people as they tuck into a three-course meal. A plethora of different nationalities and identities have pulled up a… Read more »

Polish Gay-Rights Demonstrators March Under Police Protection

Event in Bialystok follows attacks against pride marchers there a week earlier Bialystok, Poland—About 1,000 gay-rights demonstrators marched inside the protection of a police cordon on Sunday, the second-ever pride parade for this city in Poland’s east, a week after the first was shut down when some counterdemonstrators attacked marchers. The march, largely by gay-rights… Read more »

Bulgaria recognizes marriage of same-sex couple in landmark case

Court’s decision cannot be appealed and is a historic win for LGBTI rights A top court in Bulgaria ruled the country must recognize a same-sex couple’s overseas marriage. Last year, the Sofia City Administrative Court ruled in favor of Cristina Palma and Mariama Diallo, an Australian-French couple who married in France in 2016, but who… Read more »

The gay cleric who made me think again about the church

Opinion: Documentary maker Cherish Oteka on why she made her new film, Too Gay For God? and the Reverend Jide Macaulay I still remember it clearly; I was sandwiched in a row full of loud and proud religious folk dressed in their Sunday’s finest at our weekly church service. Our respected pastor, as passionate as… Read more »

7 years ago, 12 young and courageous girls and boys challenged a mountain of prejudices and held the first Pride Parade in Tirana.

Today, thanks to the efforts of activists and supporters of the LGBTI community, many things have changed in Albania. That’s why this year we will be more numerous, stronger, organized and free. However, for many of us, being different is continuously a reason for violence, discrimination, isolation, and persecution. Therefore, we will march with courage… Read more »

Baltic Pride attracts record number of people in Vilnius – photos updated

Around 10,000 people attended the March for Equality on Saturday, according to Baltic Pride organizers. Crowds of people descended from Bernardinai Gardens via Gediminas avenue to Lukiškes square, carrying flags from the Baltic states, Azerbaijan, Poland, Russia, Israel and other nations. This year, various political parties in Lithuania, corporations, as well as grassroot organisations took… Read more »

Lithuania’s LGBTI community refuse to hide away any more

Stonewall 50: Ahead of Baltic Pride, this writer says increasing LGBTI liberation in Lithuania is being matched by a rise in hate-motivated crimes The 12 June 2016 was the day that tore me in half. Nearly 12 months after the US Supreme Court issued a ground-breaking judgment that outlawed the ban on same-sex marriage as… Read more »

Arsonists attack LGBTI rights lawyer in Moldova

Police refused to investigate the arson A human rights lawyer who works with LGBTI community in Moldova has become the victim of an arson attack. At about 1.43am on Friday 31 May, Doina Ioana Straisteanu, found her car alight outside her office in central Chisinau, Moldova’s capital city. She said an unknown male allegedly committed… Read more »

Pride Edinburgh reveals headliner for this year’s music festival

Edinburgh is also launching a Humans of Pride project ahead of the parade Pride Edinburgh will return to Bristo Square on Saturday 22 June to celebrate the LGBTI community in the capital of Scotland. This year’s unapologetic theme This Is Me will be a way to honor the many Humans of Pride that have made… Read more »

Europe’s smallest country San Marino bans anti-gay discrimination

San Marino has voted to outlaw discrimination based on sexual orientation. The microstate, which is the smallest country in Europe by population with just 33,400 citizens, held a public vote on Sunday (June 2) on whether to update its discrimination protections. The country’s constitution already made clear: “All are equal before the law, without distinction… Read more »

Estonian council broke the law when it cut LGBTI festival funding

A victory against discrimination Organizers of an Estonian LGBTI film festival are ‘delighted’ a court ruled in their favor after they sued their local council. In February, SevenBow, the organizers of Festheart LGBTI film festival sued Rakvere City Council in northern Estonia for cutting its funding by 80%. The city’s laws dictate that its cultural… Read more »

Thousands rally in Northern Ireland in support of gay marriage

The Belfast rally was led by the same-sex partner of slain journalist and LGBTQ advocate Lyra McKee. Thousands of people marched through Belfast on Saturday to demand the recognition of same-sex marriage in Northern Ireland, the only region of the United Kingdom where it does not have legal status. Attempts to legislate for same-sex marriage… Read more »

Russian embassy wrapped in Pride flag to protest Chechnya’s anti-gay purge

They unfurled the flag alongside handing in a petition calling for the Russian government to intervene ‘We’re here to hand in some post,’ Eleanor Kennedy said into the intercom outside the Russian Embassy, London. Kennedy, alongside dozens of placard-holding supporters, were handing a petition calling for Russian President Vladimir Putin to respond to the second… Read more »

Horrific evidence emerges of more torture in Chechnya’s gay purge

Men were suspended upside down while given electric shocks Graphic new evidence has emerged of the torture of gay men at the hands of authorities in Chechnya. The new evidence comes from the most recent crackdown of the LGBTI community. Earlier this year new reports revealed Chechnya had conducted another round up of LGBTI people… Read more »

The Men of Lesbos

…The events culminate in the appearance of a group of men, most of them shepherds, each wearing dozens of bells in copper and iron of every size—the sort you’d normally find around the necks of sheep and goats. Altogether, the bells on any one man can weigh as much as twenty kilograms or more. Anonymous… Read more »

London’s first trans pride is coming

Mark your calendars for 14 September London’s first trans pride will launch on 14 September. London Trans Pride ‘centers and celebrates trans people, trans narratives, trans experience’ according to a Facebook event posted on Tuesday (23 April). The all-day festival will include music, performances, stalls, talks, and artwork at a yet to be confirmed location.… Read more »

Turkish court lifts ban on Pride events in Ankara

The ban which had been in effect since November 2017 A court has lifted a ban on LGBTI Pride events being held in Turkey’s capital city, Ankara. Kaos GL, a Turkish LGBTI rights group, successfully appealed the ban at the 12th administrative court on Friday (20 April). LGBTI rights supporters had attempted to appeal the… Read more »

Russian LGBT Activists Detained At St. Petersburg Protest

Russian police detained 11 lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) rights activists taking part in an annual Day of Silence protest in St. Petersburg on April 17. Around 50 protesters sealed their mouths with red tape and marched through the city’s streets. Russia passed a law in 2013 banning the spread of gay “propaganda.” By… Read more »

Slovakia elects its first-ever female, LGBTI-friendly president

Zuzana Caputova might change the game for LGBTI people by legally recognizing same-sex unions Liberal lawyer and LGBTI ally Zuzana Caputova has become the first-ever female president of Slovakia. Caputova’s election breaks the trend that has seen populist, anti-EU politicians make gains across the continent. She is a founding member of Progressive Slovakia, a non-parliamentary… Read more »

Turin mayor in Italy unveils banner to counter World Congress of Families

The banner was hung from the City Hall and carries a message of inclusivity for all kinds of families As the anti-gay, pro-life World Congress of Families takes over the city of Verona, Italy, many public figures are showing their support the the LGBTI community. Turin mayor Chiara Appendino unveiled a banner on 29 March,… Read more »

Survivors of Chechnya’s homophobic purge reveal what happened to them

These are the real stories of gay men who have been tortured, humiliated, beaten and electrocuted Survivors of Chechnya’s homophobic purge are, with very few exceptions, always anonymous. Many people have fled for their lives. Officers could catch them and send them back to a concentration camp. People are tortured, humiliated, beaten and electrocuted and… Read more »

LGBTI ‘lifeline’ for people in rural Ireland under threat of closure

Teach Solais is the only LGBTI center in western Ireland. And without it, people fighting rural isolation would be without their vital support A lifeline for LGBTI people living in rural western Ireland is in danger of closing. Teach Solais, an Irish word meaning ‘lighthouse’, is providing much-needed services. It is the only LGBTI center… Read more »

Turkey: Being gay could cost you your job

A Turkish police officer who identifies as homosexual has been suspended from duty in the city of Van. He was in the force for over 10 years. DW details his ordeal. Metin*, a 34-year-old Turkish police officer in eastern Anatolia, has been suspended from duty because he is gay. He can’t believe what’s happened. “When… Read more »

All the top 10 happiest countries in the world have the best LGBTI rights

They’re gay in both senses of the word The World Happiness Report 2019 has been released and all of the top ten countries have an exemplary record on LGBTI rights. The report, produced by the Sustainable Development Solutions Network in partnership with the Ernesto Illy Foundation, has ranked 156 countries on how happy their citizens… Read more »

Romanian senators just slammed down two civil partnership bills

It’s the latest defeat in the 11 year-long battle to legalize civil partnerships The Romanian Senate rejected by majority two civil partnership bills yesterday (18 March). Both bills proposed by pro-LGBTI parties were defeated in the Senate, Romania Insider reported. This is the latest defeat in an 11 year battle to legalize civil partnerships in… Read more »

A trans social worker from Mumbai just became a state ambassador

While the trans community has far to go, this is a huge step in representation In a groundbreaking first for the country, the Election Commission of India appointed their first trans ambassador today (19 March). The EIC elected Gauri Sawant, a Mumbai-based trans activist, as one of the 12 election ambassadors from the state. Speaking… Read more »

The Gay Enemy in Poland’s Culture War

The governing nationalist party says LGBT groups are a dangerous threat and it’s turning them into an election issue. When you’re the self-proclaimed defender of a nation’s Christian values in a morally bankrupt Europe, you see enemies everywhere. Poland’s populist government has vilified European Union elites, Muslim refugees, the Germans and anyone questioning Poland’s role… Read more »

Russia cancels youth festival for promoting LGBTI agenda

Festival organizers also received death threats Police hauled the organizer of a youth festival in Russia in for questioning as she received online death threats. Yulia Tsvetkova put together the Colour of Saffron festival in the far eastern town of Komsomolsk-on-Amur. Due to run this weekend, local authorities cancelled the event over concerns one of… Read more »

Homophobic arsonists torch HIV testing center in Athens

HIV testing is continuing in a mobile unit parked outside the torched building The Greek government has condemned an arson attack on a LGBTI sexual health organization in Athens. Unknown assailants set fire to the Athens headquarters of Checkpoint during the early hours of Monday morning. Located in the central and tourist area, Monastiraki, fire… Read more »

Poland’s ruling party launches anti-LGBTI attack at party convention

PiS leader Jaroslaw Kaczynski warned voters that supporting LGBTI rights would ‘attack families’ Poland’s ruling Law and Justice Party (PiS) launched an attack on gay rights as part of its election strategy last weekend (9 March). This was ahead of European elections in May and national elections later in the year, reported Emerging Europe. At… Read more »

Royal Ascot relaxes dress code to make the races more LGBTI-inclusive

Elegant racegoers of the Royal Ascot will now be able to dress for the gender they ‘feel most comfortable with,’ it was announced today (5 March). The policy is part of a diversity drive to be more LGBTI-inclusive, according to The Telegraph. Visitors can dress according to their true selves, but must nevertheless not break… Read more »

‘Keep Warsaw free from fa****s’: Homophobes unfurl anti-gay banner at soccer

It happened less than two weeks after Warsaw signed the country’s first LGBTI rights declaration Less than two weeks after its mayor signed a historic accord recognizing the rights of LGBTI people, homophobes unfurled an anti-gay banner at a soccer match in Warsaw. Fans of the team Legia Warsaw unfurled the massive banner which read,… Read more »

This is what it’s like to be tortured in a Chechnya gay concentration camp

LGBTI activists on the ground are willing to try and evacuate as many as gay men as they can You hear a rapid knock on the door. Your eyes dart to the window, your heart beats faster. ‘It’s the police – open the door,’ a man says loudly from outside. You do – there are… Read more »

Mayor of Warsaw becomes first to protect rights of LGBTI people in Poland

It was the first document recognizing LGBTI rights in Poland The mayor of Poland’s capital Warsaw and LGBTI groups have responded to homophobic backlash after he signed a declaration affirming LGBTI rights in the city. Rafal Trzaskowski signed the first ever LGBT+ Declaration in central-eastern Europe last week. It was also the first document recognizing… Read more »

LGBTI crisis in Chechnya: People tortured in ‘gay purge’ need to flee the country

‘LGBTI people in Chechnya urgently need our help to save them from imprisonment, torture and murder’ LGBTI people are being rounded up, detained, tortured and executed in Chechnya. The ‘gay purge’ has been happening periodically since the end of 2016. What we know is that Chechen authorities have targeted human rights defenders, their critics and… Read more »

Mayor of Warsaw becomes first to protect rights of LGBTI people in Poland

It was the first document recognizing LGBTI rights in Poland The mayor of Poland’s capital Warsaw and LGBTI groups have responded to homophobic backlash after he signed a declaration affirming LGBTI rights in the city. Rafal Trzaskowski signed the first ever LGBT+ Declaration in central-eastern Europe last week. It was also the first document recognizing… Read more »

Poland makes moves to ban gay conversion therapy

Poland is in ‘dire need’ of addressing its policies on LGBTI people National lawmakers in Poland have created a draft bill to parliament ban gay conversion therapy. Politicians from the Nowoczesna party drafted the bill alongside Campaign Against Homophobia. Gay conversion or ‘ex-gay conversion’ therapy is a widely condemned process. It involves forcing LGBTI to… Read more »

Partner of Serbia’s lesbian PM Ana Brnabic gives birth to a baby boy

Brnabic is the first openly gay politician and the first woman to serve as Prime Minister in Serbia The partner of Serbia’s Prime Minister Ana Brnabic has given birth to a baby boy. Her office has announced the same-sex couple has welcomed a boy named Igor on 20 February. ‘Ana Brnabic is one of the… Read more »