Europe

 

 

 

Russia Crime gangs blackmail gays

St. Petersburg, Russia — (AP) Criminal gangs in Russia, operating through gay dating sites, have found a lucrative new blackmail target: homosexual men. A St. Petersburg economist, one of their latest victims, said several men burst into the apartment where he was meeting his date. Claiming that his date was under age, they threatened to… 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 »

Russia’s LGBT community get the chance to show pride with a rainbow

Russia’s LGBT community can now protest against the country’s homophobic laws with a rainbow. A group of Dutch artists have launched a new protest project that will enable Russians to fight against the country’s notorious law against gay “propaganda”, without breaking it. The new app, Raduga (Russian for rainbow), tracks weather forecasts across country and… Read more »

Olympic Water Polo Player Comes Out Ahead of Rio Games

Víctor Gutiérrez said he “felt a responsibility to share it with others.” Move over, Tom Daley. There’s a new out summer Olympic hopeful jumping in the pool. Víctor Gutiérrez, 25, who plays on the Spanish water polo headed to Rio this summer, came out publicly as gay in an interview with Shangay magazine. In his… Read more »

David Cameron: I want to change the world on global LGBT rights

Prime Minister David Cameron has lamented the UK losing its top ranking on LGBT rights issues in Europe – pledging to push equality across the world as he celebrates the International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia. For four years, rights group ILGA-Europe put the United Kingdom at the top of its extensive rankings Rainbow Europe… Read more »

Abuse At Games Drives Gay Spanish Soccer Referee To Quit

Jesus Tomillero, believed to be the first openly gay registered Spanish soccer referee, is quitting his job over being the target of verbal abuse at games. “I can’t stand it anyone,” Tomillero told the AP. The 21-year-old came out gay 18 months ago on social media. A part-time referee and waiter, Tomillero said that the… Read more »

Italian Lawmakers Approve Civil Unions Bill

Italian lawmakers on Wednesday paved the way for Italy to recognize gay and lesbian couples with civil unions. Prime Minister Matteo Renzi forced the issue by calling for a confidence vote in Italy’s Chamber of Deputies. The Italian Senate gave its approval in February. With a 369-193 vote, Renzi’s cabinet survived. According to Reuters, such… Read more »

Germany will pay compensation to men convicted under historic gay sex laws

Germany will pay compensation to men who faced convictions under the country’s historic laws banning gay sex. The country initially banned gay sex in 1871, when a penal code was introduced criminalising homosexual acts – while they were extended under the Nazis to convict thousands of gay men and send them to concentration camps. However,… Read more »

Isle of Man finally passes same-sex marriage

The Isle of Man has finally approved same-sex marriage – meaning Northern Ireland is set to be the last place in the Isles without marriage equality. As a crown dependency, the Isle of Man maintains autonomy from the UK on issues including marriage. It was the last part of these islands to legalise homosexuality in… Read more »

Gay clubbing and stoic activism in Russia’s homophobic heartland

Coda Story report from the industrial city of Samara where the one remaining LGBT rights organisation provides invaluable support – discreetly It is late in Samara, an industrial hub in central Russia and the city’s only gay nightclub is proving difficult to find. In a dark car park there are none of the telltale signs:… Read more »

Why Does Gay Sex Scare Modern Muslims? It Didn’t in the Golden Age.

Colonialism taught Muslims to be ashamed of many things, including sexual orientation. Now they are more intolerant (and maybe more hypocritical) than the Victorians. London — Half of British Muslims say being gay “should be outlawed.” Thus ran the headline in London’s Sunday Times this week. Even more opposed gay marriage, while almost half thought… Read more »

Air France faces revolt from gay cabin crew over flights to Iran

Air France is facing a rebellion from gay air stewards – who are refusing to fly on a new route to Iran. The company is launching a new route from Paris to Tehran, the capital of the reclusive state, with flights set to begin on April 17. However, the new route has been controversial with… Read more »

Norway to allow same-sex church weddings

The Church of Norway is expected to approve a motion that would allow same-sex couples to marry in the country’s churches. It is believed that the Bishops Conference, which meets today (Monday, April 11), is to adopt new marriage rituals that will provide gender-neutral ceremonies. The draft resolution which is expected to be approved (after… Read more »

The Art of Reading Russian Obituaries

A journalist was killed in St. Petersburg last week, but no one called for an immediate and full investigation. No one seemed to suspect that he was killed because of his work. In a country of frequent and varied violence, this was a different kind of crime, a murder that dare not speak its name.… Read more »

The tartan rainbow: why it’s great to be gay in Scotland

The leaders of four of Scotland’s six main political parties have come out, and the country has been identified as offering the best legal protection for gay people. But how deep does this new liberality go? The most revealing thing about Scottish Labour leader Kezia Dugdale’s recent interview in the Fabian Review was not her… Read more »

“I Am Going to the Pride, How about You?”

PINK Embassy / LGBT Pro officially announced today its campaign under the moto “I Am Going to the Pride, How about You?” to mobilize national and international organizations, institutions and activists to join the 3rd Tirana Pride on the 25th of September 2016. Tirana Pride 2016 will be a day of solidarity with lesbian, gay,… Read more »

Spring Gay Tour (one time only)

The Holiday begins with your arrival in Sofia on Friday. Our representative will meet you at the airport or the station and take you to the hotel. You’ll have the rest of the day to settle in or take a walk in the city. In the evening we will take you to a traditional Bulgarian… Read more »

Families fight Austria’s gay marriage ban

The latest case to challenge the same-sex marriage ban in Austria on the grounds that it makes children in the family illegitimate was heard in court this week. Following a change in the law in January 2015, same-sex couples are now allowed to adopt the children of their partners in Austria, although they are still… Read more »

Guido Westerwelle Dies at 54; German Foreign Minister Opposed Libya Incursion

Berlin — Guido Westerwelle, who served as Germany’s first openly gay foreign minister and kept his country out of NATO’s intervention in Libya, died on Friday in Cologne. He was 54. His foundation and the German government announced his death. The cause was complications of leukemia, which was diagnosed in 2014. Mr. Westerwelle was a… Read more »

Andrew Haigh’s gay romance Weekend triumphs in Italy despite Vatican ban

Nottingham-based drama about love affair between lifeguard and conceptual artist scores country’s highest per-screen average this weekend A British independent film about a burgeoning gay relationship has proven a surprise box office smash in Italy, despite an alleged attempt by the Catholic church to “paralyse” its release. Andrew Haigh’s Weekend, which was released in the… Read more »

Italy’s biggest fashion designer to extend benefits to same-sex couples

Italian fashion house, Gucci, is to become one of first major designers in the country to give same-sex newlyweds the same treatment as heterosexual couples. Despite civil unions being passed by the Italian Senate last month, the Florence-based company is taking action before it is legally required to and offering same-sex couples the same 14… Read more »

Calvin Klein accused of breaking ‘gay propaganda’ law in Russia

A new advert for the fashion giant’s latest fragrance has sparked outrage in Russia. Russian authorities says they have received a number of complaints for a new ad for Calvin Klein perfume CK2. The advertisement – which features two same-sex couples – has been reported to authorities in the country for allegedly containing “elements of… Read more »

Police lock down Berlin street after shots fired at LGBT museum

A museum in Berlin dedicated to LGBT history has been shot at by unidentified assailants. The Schwules Museum, which opened in 1985, is dedicated to exhibiting the city’s vibrant and long-thriving gay scene. In an official statement this week, the museum warned that it had identified what appear to be bullet holes, following a shooting… Read more »

Italian court recognises same sex adoption

A court in Italy has become the first in the country to allow a lesbian couple’s right to adopt each other’s biological daughters. The tribunal in Rome upheld two appeals from gay rights groups on behalf of the women that means they will both be regarded as parents of the children. The court said it… Read more »

Swiss voters reject same-sex marriage ban

Voters in Switzerland have rejected a referendum initiative that would have changed the constitution and banned same-sex couples from marriage. The country, which regularly puts key legislation before the electorate, voted by 50.8% to 49.2% on Sunday, to reject the proposal – put forward by the Christian Democratic People’s Party. Although marriage equality has yet… Read more »

Italian Senate Approves Civil Unions for Gay Couples, but Not Adoptions

Rome — After months of political infighting and decades of battles by gay people for civil rights, Italy’s Senate on Thursday approved the country’s first law granting legal recognition to civil unions, but stopped short of giving same-sex couples the right to stepchild adoption. The paring of the adoption provision was crucial to passage in… Read more »

3rd Tirana Pride To Take Place On September 25, 2016

Pink Embassy, the leading organization for the rights of the LGBT community in Albania, in cooperation with the Human Rights House in Albania and OMSA, are pleased to announce the opening of the 6th Festival of Diversity and IDAHOT under the slogan “Stand Up Against Discrimination” on May 16th 2016 at 11.00 hrs, at the… Read more »

Shelter for LGBT Syrian refugees to open in Berlin

A LGBT rights group in Germany is opening a new home in Berlin for gay refugees. The project by Schwulenberatung Berlin is in cooperation with the city council and will create shelter for over 120 people, reports euronews.com. The group behind the project say they decided to open the shelter due to abuse gay migrants… Read more »

Finland finalizes equal marriage laws… but couples still face a long wait

Finland has finally finished making tweaks to its same-sex marriage legislation – but couples still have another year to wait before marrying. Way back in November 2014, the Finnish Parliament passed a citizens’ initiative on same-sex marriage by a tight vote of 105-92. The country’s President Sauli Niinistö signed the initiative into law back in… Read more »

Gay imam helps young Muslims balance religion, sexuality

Marseille, France (AP) — Growing up in Algeria, Shaira had almost everything a young man could wish for. But he also had a big secret. In a land where homosexuality is still a crime and a sin, he was forced to live a secret life, hiding that he was gay from everyone — even his… Read more »

Portugal overturns presidential veto to legalise same-sex adoption

Portugal’s parliament has just overturned the presidential veto on a bill to legalise same-sex adoption there. The new law had passed through Portugal’s Parliament last last year, granting full adoption rights to same-sex couples, and allowing lesbian couples to receive medically assisted fertilisation. Portuguese President Anibal Cavaco Silva, of the centre-right Social Democratic Party, blocked… Read more »

Rome’s Gay Pride Marchers Call On Government To Recognize Same-Sex Civil Unions

(AFP) Tens of thousands took to the streets of Rome on Saturday for the city’s annual Gay Pride parade and to call on the Italian government to recognise civil unions for same-sex couples. The march was held in a party atmosphere, with bright lights and rainbow flags adorning the Via del Corso in the centre… Read more »

Russia’s Invisible Children

“404 we exist!” reads one of the selfies from the Children 404 Vkontakte page that has been ordered to shut down. How one outreach forum for LGBT teens has been forced to adapt to growing pressure from politicians and the public “I do not know what is going on with me, and that’s the scariest… Read more »

Thousands protest Italy’s plan to permit gay unions, adoptions

Rome (AP) — Thousands of people opposed to gay rights are gathering in Rome’s Circus Maximus to protest against legislation that would permit marriage-style unions for same-sex couples and grant them legal recognition as families. Massimo Gandolfini, organizer of Saturday’s “Family Day” protest, told Sky Tg24: “Italy is one of the few western countries that… Read more »

Travel: A gay hipster guide to Stockholm

Adam Groffman of Travels of Adam writes about the delights of the Swedish capital Stockholm. Listen, I know you hear “Stockholm” and you might first think “cold.” But you’re wrong. Well, you’re not entirely wrong. The city can be cold (it’s Sweden, after all). But it’s also just so very cool. There’s an incredible mix… 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 »

How the Nazis got away with persecuting gay men long after the Holocaust

Allowed to return to their legal careers, former Nazis enforcing §175 turned gay men into fair game once again When World War Two ended, one of the prime concerns of the British, American and Russian forces was to liberate Germany and Austria of all traces of Nazism and the Third Reich. But despite concentration camps… Read more »

The near-forgotten history of the Holocaust’s gay victims

‘The singing forest. Inexplicable. Beyond human comprehension. And so much remains untold.’ Before Hitler rose to power in 1933, Berlin was a hub of gay life, in the midst of which one of the world’s first homosexual liberation movements slowly gained momentum. That would end with gay people swept up in the Holocaust. But even… 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 »

Portugal President Anibal Cavaco Silva Vetoes Gay Adoption Bill

Portugal President Anibal Cavaco Silva has vetoed a bill recently approved by lawmakers that granted full adoption rights to gay and lesbian couples. The legislation gave gay couples the same adoption rights as straight couples. Silva called the change radical and in need of broader public consultation. He said that he was uncertain whether the… Read more »