Greece, Europe

Male homosexuality and female prostitution were decriminalized in 1951 by the new Criminal Code adopted in 1950 and male prostitution has been legal since May 2006. Lesbians are not mentioned or acknowledged in the Greek Criminal Code. LGBT rights in Greece lag behind those of its Western European counterparts. Greece lacks many laws, provisions and basic rights that gay people enjoy in most developed countries of Western Europe and North America and LGBT issues are a particularly rare subject of public debate. Homosexuality is however becoming less a taboo and gays are enjoying growing visibility through the media, from print to cinematography. Legislation against discrimination in the workplace on the grounds of sexual orientation was adopted in early 2005 in accordance with the European Union Directive. Although there is no official recognition of same-sex couples, a 1982 law that legalized civil marriage between "persons", without specifying gender, allows in theory for same sex marriages; this issue is very contested within the government. Athens has a number of LGBT associations and a developing gay village in the Gazi, Athens neighborhood. A gay pride event, the 'Athens Pride' (see below) and an international Gay and Lesbian film festival, the 'Outview', are held annually. The gay scene in the island of Myconos and the lesbian scene in Eressos, Lesbos are famous internationally.


News & Reports:


Greece to legalize same-sex marriage after opposition agrees to support it

Greece is slated to legalize same-sex marriage and adoption, but surrogacy will remain restricted. Greece’s government is slated to legalize same-sex marriage and adoption after the country’s left-wing political party withdrew its opposition. Stefanos Kasselakis, the out gay leader of Syriza, said Thursday that he would instruct the 38 lawmakers in his party to vote… 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 »

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 »

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 »

Gay activist reportedly lynched in Greece, dies at 33

People are divided about the circumstances The LGBTI community in Greece — and beyond — are demanding justice for the death of gay activist Zak Kostopoulos. Video evidence allegedly shows a group of men attacking and kicking Kostopoulos on Saturday (22 September). According to a report by PinkNews, authorities are still investigating the circumstances of… Read more »

Greece allows gay couples to foster children in landmark move

Gay couples will now be able to foster children in Greece. The groundbreaking legislation was passed by 161 votes to 103 on May 9. ? It will enable same-sex partners who are in civil partnerships to become foster parents – though adoption is still off-limits for gay people. Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras welcomed the result… Read more »

Gay couple’s marriage declared ‘void’ by Greek Supreme Court

Greece’s Supreme Court has upheld a decision to void a gay couple’s marriage, nearly ten years after they tied the knot. Themis Katsagiannis and Dimitris Tsambrounis tied the knot on the island of Tilos nearly a decade ago, in June 2008. ? Greece does not permit same-sex marriages, but the couple were permitted to wed… Read more »

Afghan asylum seekers resort to sex work in Athens

Intro: Disgraced and Ashamed in Greece I visited Greece (Mykonos) last October, stayed in an seaside villa, ate plentiful meals, drove around the island in a rented car and basked in the sunshine. That’s how most foreign tourists experience Greece. They arrive and depart in a bubble of affluence and comfort and do not see… Read more »

Greek Parliament votes for a controversial bill to expand rights for LGBT people

The Greek Parliament passed the controversial bill despite an absence of 73 MPs from across different parties in a house of 300. The bill will expand the rights of same sex couples in Greece, as well as ensuring equality in the workplace regardless of sexual orientation, gender or religion. The bill was approved by 201… Read more »

Greece to send gay Syrian asylum seeker back to Turkey under controversial migrant deal

A gay Syrian migrant whose asylum claim was rejected by Greece will be sent back to Turkey, sources told AFP on Thursday, the first rejected applicant known to be returned under a controversial migrant deal. The 46-year-old man arrived on the Greek island of Lesbos after the EU struck a deal to send some failed… Read more »

Athens reborn: the gritty gay elegance of the Greek capital

Ruinous beauty, optimistic charm, a blazing hot gay scene – find out why Athens is still a top LGBTI hotspot I’ve pondered the progress of the Greek economic crisis with interest and confusion. Much of the xenophobic rhetoric around the crisis made me side with the Greeks long before I’d grasped the finer details of… Read more »

Athens Mayor performs Greece’s first same-sex civil union

The first civil union was conducted by Athens’ Mayor Giorgos Kaminis yesterday. Same-sex couples in Greece began entering into civil unions on Monday (January 25) after legislation passed in December came into effect. The first civil union ceremony conducted was by Mayor Kaminis and was between an unnamed male couple – a doctor and a… Read more »

Greece Approves Civil Unions For Gay Couples

Greece’s parliament has approved a bill that allows gay and lesbian couples to enter a civil union. According to the AFP, 193 lawmakers backed the law, while 56 rejected it. Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras said that the bill would end a practice of “backwardness and shame” for Greece. The new law does not provide for… Read more »

Greece to grant legal recognition to same-sex couples

Greece’s new government has announced it will grant legal recognition to same-sex couples. Greece lags behind most of Western Europe on gay rights, banning same-sex adoption and refusing to recognise same-sex relationships. However, the radical left-wing Syriza party – which swept to power earlier this month – has confirmed it will seek recognition for same-sex… Read more »

Greece: Newly discovered gay erotica ‘some of the oldest in the world’

An archaeologist in Greece has uncovered ancient inscriptions celebrating gay sex, in what is believed to be some of the oldest erotic graffiti in the world. Dr Andreas Vlachopoulos of the University of Ioannina, has been working on the Aegean island of Astypalaia for four years. He reports finding inscriptions describing gay male sex alongside… Read more »

Greek Government backs down on civil unions

The Greek Government has dumped plans to provide civil unions for same-sex couples after a backlash from conservative MPs in its coalition but will attach anti-discrimination protections for sexual minorities to an anti-racism bill Greece’s Government will not comply with a European Court of Human Rights ruling to open its heterosexual civil unions scheme to… Read more »

Gay marriage in the year 100 AD

Gay marriage sounds like an ultra-contemporary idea. But almost twenty years ago, a Catholic scholar at Yale shocked the world by publishing a book packed with evidence that same-sex marriages were sanctioned by the early Christian Church during an era commonly called the Dark Ages. John Boswell was a historian and religious Catholic who dedicated… Read more »

Greece Reinstates Forced HIV Testing

Greece’s health minister has reinstated a draconian measure that allows mandatory HIV testing, detention, and even eviction. Health minister Adonis Georgladis has reinstated Public Health Decree 39A, a 2012 measure that allows police to detain people suspected of being HIV positive and force them to be tested, according the Greek news outlet ENET. The measure… Read more »

MEPs condemn transphobic police crackdown in Greece

Members of the European Parliament are worried by reports Greek police have started to systematically harass transgender women in Athens and Thessaloniki. Police have made numerous arrests in recent weeks, and detained a lawyer defending the women. Officers in Thessaloniki have been operating sweeping arrests, often with policemen behaving aggressively, under the pretext of ID… Read more »

Mount Athos: A visit to the Holy Mountain

In February 1936 the young Patrick Leigh Fermor walked along the peninsula that we know as Mount Athos. It was there he celebrated his twenty-first birthday with Russian Orthodox monks. In 2011 the CBS ’60 Minutes’ programme gained access to the Holy Mountain, the first television since 1981. Here is a unique opportunity to take… Read more »

Gay People Living in Fear in Greece

What was supposed to be a fun evening for Stamatis Peramatzis, turned out to be a nightmare. As the 39-year-old was walking out of a parking lot together with his partner in an Athens mall, a man out of nowhere appeared and screamed: “Faggots, we will kick you out of Greece and you will never… Read more »

Neo-Nazi thugs threaten safety of Greek gays

‘Gays are the new Jews’ in Greece, claim campaigners amid escalating violence against the LGBT community in Athens Campaigners are warning of escalating violence against gays in Athens, after knife-wielding neo-Nazis attacked a group of LGBT activists. Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender groups in the Greek capital are ‘extremely alarmed’ about the escalating number of… Read more »

Gay pride rally in Greece is attacked

Athens, Greece — Police say about 50 people threw eggs and plastic bottles of water at about 400 people holding a gay pride parade in the northern Greek city of Thessaloniki. Police moved in to restrict the attackers on Saturday, but no injuries were reported. In recent days, Anthimos, the senior Greek Orthodox cleric in… Read more »

Greek couple fight law over big fat gay wedding

A student who used legal loophole to marry partner on the island of Tilos in 2008 says legal battle has put gay rights back on the Greek political agenda A Greek student who took part in the country’s first gay wedding may take lawmakers to the European Court of Human Rights after they declared the… Read more »

Gay Greece News & Reports 2011

1 Greek TV fined over male kissing 11/03 February 13, 2011 – UK Gay News 1 Gay Youth in Athens to Stage Public Valentine’s ‘Kiss-In’ – Move follows self censorship of gay kisses in Kate Perry and Pink videos by MTV Greece and MAD TV Athens – Greek youngsters are getting fed up that a… Read more »

Gay Greece News & Reports 2003-10

1 Greek TV fined over male kissing 11/03 2 Gays in Greece Kiss in Public As Protest 11/03 3 Lesbian and gays win medals over the last few days at the Olympics 8/04 4 A quasi Govt agency… create a civil unions registry 2/05 5 Greek Leader Rejects Rights For Gay Couples 12/05 6 Second… Read more »