Europe

 

 

 

Gay Couples In Northern Ireland Begin Registering To Marry: First Weddings Set For Valentine’s Day

Gay and lesbian couples in Northern Ireland began registering to marry as a new marriage law took effect on Monday. Northern Ireland was the only part of the United Kingdom where same-sex couples could not wed. Last year, lawmakers in the UK overwhelmingly backed a plan to extend marriage equality to the region if the… Read more »

Same-sex marriage now legal in Northern Ireland

Same-sex marriage is now legally recognised in Northern Ireland. From Monday, same-sex couples will be able to register to marry, meaning the first ceremonies will take place in February. For couples who are already married, their marriage will now be legally recognised in Northern Ireland. However, those who are already in a civil partnership will… Read more »

Polish centre-left taps gay MEP as presidential candidate

Poland’s centre-left parties on Tuesday (7 January) approved Robert Biedron, an openly gay politician, as their candidate in the May presidential election. The move in the conservative, predominantly Catholic country where same-sex unions are not recognised, was aimed at preserving democracy, they said. Leaders in the Lewica (Left) alliance said they chose Biedron because of… Read more »

Poland’s Rainbow Plague

Poland’s Rainbow Plague- Podcast The last few months have shown a spike in our Polish listeners. And it’s no wonder considering the violent anti-queer rhetoric that has filled the country lately. Sadly, the Pis Parties control of the country has put queer Poles in a dangerous predicament. On this episode we cover some of the… Read more »

Senate Confirms Openly Gay Ambassador To Lithuania

The U.S. Senate on Thursday confirmed the nomination of Robert Gilchrist as the U.S. ambassador to Lithuania. Gilchrist is at least the fifth openly gay person to serve in an ambassadorial role under the Trump administration, the Washington Blade reported. Senators confirmed Gilchrist with a voice vote. President Donald Trump nominated Gilchrist, a career Foreign… Read more »

German Cabinet Approves Ban On Gay Conversion Therapy

Germany could become the latest country to ban gay conversion therapy after the Government Cabinet approved plans. The plans extends to banning the practice for all children under 18 as well as vulnerable people with “diminished decision-making capabilities” and non-consenting adults. However, it will allow for consenting adults to opt into the so-called “treatment.” The… Read more »

German bishops declare that homosexuality is completely and utterly ‘normal’

In a groundbreaking move, German bishops have revised teachings on sexual morality and said homosexuality is “normal”. As the Catholic Church prepares for its contended review, the Commission for Marriage and Family of the German Bishops’ Conference came to the consensus that being gay is a “normal form of sexual predisposition.” Moreover, church organisers committed… Read more »

Gay man in Russia forced into hiding over YouTube interview

(CNN) A gay Russian man is in hiding after Russian authorities opened a criminal case over a YouTube video in which he was interviewed by children, a case that has drawn attention from human-rights activists. Maxim Pankratov told CNN he was facing threats and a potentially lengthy prison sentence for appearing in the video discussing… Read more »

Gay man in Russia forced into hiding over YouTube interview

(CNN) – A gay Russian man is in hiding after Russian authorities opened a criminal case over a YouTube video in which he was interviewed by children, a case that has drawn attention from human-rights activists. Maxim Pankratov told CNN he was facing threats and a potentially lengthy prison sentence for appearing in the video… Read more »

Turkey puts lecturer, students on trial for taking part in LGBT pride march

Parade has been held annually since 2011, but university banned it this year; police used pepper spray, plastic bullets and tear gas to disperse it Ankara, Turkey — Eighteen Turkish students and a lecturer went on trial on Tuesday for taking part in a banned LGBTI Pride event at an Ankara university. The defendants face… Read more »

100 years ago, Germany’s ‘Einstein of Sex’ began the gay rights movement

Although he never became a household name like Freud, sexologist Magnus Hirschfeld fought to decriminalize homosexuality and improve LGBTQ healthcare During the years before Nazism destroyed Europe, a German Jew in Berlin pioneered what became the modern LGBTQ rights movement. Magnus Hirschfeld was the first clinician to prove that gays are at a higher risk… Read more »

Swedish government grants $175,000 to fund drag queen story hours for children

The Swedish government is investing SEK 1.7 million, the equivalent of $175,000, to fund drag queen story hour shows for children and those with disabilities. The investment will come from the Swedish Inheritance Fund, a state body that manages the inheritance money of Swedes who die without a written will and next of kin. The… Read more »

Regulations to allow same sex parents register both their names on their child’s birth cert to be signed today

Law will allow same sex parents register both their names on their child’s birth cert from May 5th 2020. Health Minister Simon Harris will today sign regulations which will allow same-sex parents register both their names on their child’s birth cert from May 5th 2020. Harris will meet with a number of LGBT families and… Read more »

New study finds that Russian schoolchildren are actually tolerant of the LGBTQ community

Although the schoolchildren were tolerant, they weren’t trusting of the LGBTQ community. Following anti-government protests against the Russian government during the Summer, in which several youth activists attended, authorities have moved to try and counter this. Among the methods are patriotic teachings in schools, and a ban on minors attending protests. In the wake of… Read more »

Northern Ireland abortion and same-sex marriage laws change

Abortion has been decriminalised and same-sex marriage is to be legalised in Northern Ireland. Legislation making the changes – which was passed by MPs at Westminster – came into force at midnight. The first same-sex weddings in Northern Ireland are set to take place in February 2020. The government has until the end of March… Read more »

Tension over gay rights moves to fore in Polish election

Adam Juda had just left a bar in Warsaw late one night in August when he started chatting with a group of strangers walking his way. The three men and a woman were friendly at first, but when they realized he was coming from a gay bar, the men set upon him, beating him unconscious… Read more »

Northern Ireland prepares for momentous gay marriage, abortion changes

Northern Ireland is the only part of the United Kingdom that does not allow same-sex marriage. That will likely change at the stroke of midnight Monday. Belfast — Campaigners who fought for decades to end Northern Ireland’s same sex-marriage ban and restrictions on abortion prepared on Monday for a momentous change to the laws on… Read more »

Bishop of Iceland issues overdue apology to gay people for church’s ignorance on same-sex marriage

The Bishop of Iceland has apologised to the gay and lesbian community for discrimination against same-sex marriage by the country’s National Church. Agnes Sigurðardóttir, who took office as the Bishop of Iceland in 2012, made the apology on the Icelandic talk show Kastljós on Tuesday, October 29, in response to questions about her predecessor Karl… Read more »

Polish police stop protesters who disrupt gay pride parade

Warsaw, Poland — Police used water cannons and pepper spray and detained dozens of far-right protesters who tried to disrupt an LGBT pride march Saturday in conservative eastern Poland. The clash took place during the second so-called Equality March in the city of Lublin. The event reflects the gay rights movement in Poland which has… Read more »

Bosnians march in first Gay Pride under tight police protection

Sarajevo (Reuters) – Several thousand people marched in Bosnia’s first Gay Pride on Sunday, protected by a major security operation including anti-sniper units after some conservative Muslim groups organized counter-rallies. The parade in the capital Sarajevo ended peacefully despite fears of violence prompted by aggressive hate speech online in a country where anti-gay sentiment can… Read more »

No single gene associated with being gay

A genetic analysis of almost half a million people has concluded there is no single “gay gene”. The study, published in Science, used data from the UK Biobank and 23andMe, and found some genetic variants associated with same-sex relationships. But genetic factors accounted for, at most, 25% of same-sex behaviour. Advocacy group GLAAD said the… Read more »

French league game halted after homophobic banners unfurled

Nice, France – The French league game between Nice and Marseille was halted for several minutes during the first half Wednesday after Nice fans unfurled two banners with homophobic messages. One banner referred to Tuesday’s takeover of Nice by British billionaire Jim Ratcliffe, Britain’s richest man who is the owner of chemicals giant Ineos. The… Read more »

Svalbard had his first Pride this weekend – super cool pictures!

Svalbard has had its first Pride ever this weekend! Organizer Lene Jeanette Dyngeland was nervous but was pleased with how many people joined. Behind the Longyearbyen initiative in Svalbard is Lene Jeanette Dyngeland . She started the whole project without any idea how it would end and she was excited to change until Saturday, when… Read more »

LGBT in Russia: smashing stereotypes and creating a queer future

For Russia’s LGBT community, homophobia and violence are part of day-to-day reality. Some cases, like the murder of activist Yelena Grigoryeva last week or torture in Chechnya, have made international headlines and caused global outrage, while others go tragically unreported. But there is more to LGBT+ life in Russia than just oppression. In fact, a… Read more »

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 »