Europe

 

 

 

How Queer Poles Find Any Degree of Self-Embrace They Can

‘OUT: LGBTQ Poland’ features portraits and stories from queer Polish people that are as uplifting as they are chilling. To be out and LGBTQ in a staunchly Catholic, politically conservative country like Poland is to summon an unlikely well of resilience while waiting for social tides to change. As journalist Robert Rient writes in the… Read more »

The ‘gayest’ city in the world?

Skopje’s classical makeover may be both controversial and kitsch, but we couldn’t get enough of it! Imagine If Mariah Carey Decided To Rebuild Ancient Rome… Thankfully, One Doesn’t Have To Conjure Up Depictions Of Glitzy Statues And Wedding-Cake Style Buildings, As Such A Place Exists And It Is Called Skopje. From faux neoclassical façades to… Read more »

Austria Court Legalizes Same-Sex Marriage

Austria’s Constitutional Court has ruled that laws prohibiting gay and lesbian couples from marrying are discriminatory. According to The New York Times, the court advised that gay couples be allowed to marry starting in 2019, unless lawmakers act sooner. The ruling, announced Tuesday, makes Austria the 16th European nation to grant marriage equality. In its… 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 »

More Focused Prevention Measures, Improved Access To Treatment Critical To Curb Growing HIV Epidemic In Russian Federation

PLOS Medicine: The expanding epidemic of HIV-1 in the Russian Federation Chris Beyrer, professor at the Center for Public Health and Human Rights in the Department of Epidemiology at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, and colleagues “…The continuous growth of the Russian HIV epidemic is a failure of public policy and practice. The… Read more »

Gay fans warned holding hands at Russia World Cup will be dangerous

• Equality campaigner Fare will produce cautionary guide for LGBT fans • Piara Powar: ‘Gay people have a place in Russia which is quite underground’ LGBT fans will be warned about holding hands in public and other outward displays of affection when in Russia for the World Cup next summer. A cautionary guide will be… Read more »

Russia’s ‘gay propaganda’ law has led to a huge rise in anti-LGBT attacks

Hate crimes against LGBT people have doubled since Russia created a law banning gay “propaganda”. The 2013 legislation, which prohibits “propaganda of non-traditional sexual relationships” towards minors, has been condemned by the European Court of Human Rights. ? The European judges found that the law “reinforced stigma and prejudice and encouraged homophobia”. The law also… Read more »

Romania Gay Marriage Case Could Have Outsize Impact in Europe

Bucharest, Romania — The European Union’s highest court began examining a case on Tuesday over a Romanian man’s attempts to get legal residency for his American husband, a closely watched hearing that will have major implications for the legal recognition of same-sex relationships across Europe. The case, legal experts say, could determine whether same-sex partners… Read more »

Turkish capital Ankara bans all gay rights functions

The Turkish capital Ankara has banned all gay festivals, screenings, forums and exhibitions on security grounds. The governor’s office said on Sunday that it also wanted to protect public order and sensitivities. The announcement follows a move last week to ban a festival of German-language gay films also due to have been held in the… Read more »

Turkey: German gay film festival banned in Ankara

Turkish officials have banned a festival of German-language gay films due to be held in the capital Ankara, saying it could incite hatred or be targeted by terror attacks. The organisers Pink Life QueerFest Four had planned to screen four films at cinemas on 16 and 17 November. They said the decision “deprives us of… Read more »

Six injured as ‘spy’ attacks Russian LGBT activists

Six LGBT activists have been injured during an alleged ‘acid’ attack in Moscow. The activists had been attending the Fourth LGBTIQ+ Family Conference, a conference for LGBT+ people and academic specialists in the field. The group of activists were leaving the conference when a man threw a liquid at the group and knocked several of… Read more »

1917 Russian Revolution: The gay community’s brief window of freedom

In January 1921 Russian Baltic Fleet sailor Afanasy Shaur organised an extraordinary gay wedding in Petrograd. The guests included 95 former army officers along with members of the lower ranks of both the army and navy, and one woman, dressed in a man’s suit. The city had never seen anything like it. Shaur pulled out… Read more »

Scotland to pardon gay men with historical convictions

Nicola Sturgeon offers apology in Holyrood to thousands of men prosecuted for having sex under old laws Thousands of gay men in Scotland prosecuted for having sex will be automatically pardoned in a new bill that will also allow many to get previous convictions removed from their records. The bill will pardon men who were… Read more »

Sheltering Albania’s Gay Youth from Virulent Homophobia

Emergency Housing for LGBT Youth in Tirana, Albania The psychologist at the LGBT youth shelter waited for me in a small side street in the city center of Tirana, Albania’s capital. “No one knows our exact address, we want to avoid arson and havoc,” she told me. She knocked on a discrete door. Once inside,… Read more »

Muslim woman reveals abuse growing up as a lesbian in Pakistan

A Muslim woman has described how hard it was growing up as a lesbian in Pakistan, where homosexuality is illegal. ‘Zayna’, 40, who moved to the UK in 2010, said she was discriminated against because of her sexuality but always stayed true to herself. Shopkeeper raped customer when she asked if she could charge her… Read more »

Pop star ‘feared dead’ in Chechnya’s anti-gay crackdown, human rights group warns

Members of the LGBT community suggest Zelimkhan Bakayev, who went missing in August, was abducted by authorities A leading Russian human rights group said it has “serious fears” a gay Chechen pop star has been killed in a crackdown on the homosexual community. Zelimkhan Bakayev has not been seen since 8 August when he left… Read more »

LGBT People Under Attack: Raids in Belarus, Murder in Chechnya, Registration of Gays in Central Asia

Singer and Entertainer Zelim Bakaev Apparently Murdered by the Security Services of Chechnyan President’s Security Services The LGBTQI community is under assault in Eastern Europe as well as Central Asia. The most recent crackdown in the region was this past weekend’s raids of nightclubs popular with the LGBT community in Belarus, during which two clubs… Read more »

Prime Minister Theresa May challenged over deportation of LGBT asylum seekers

Prime Minister Theresa May has been challenged in Parliament over the deportation of LGBT asylum seekers. People can seek asylum in the UK on the grounds that they face persecution in their home country because of their sexuality or their gender identity. However, the Home Office procedures for processing LGBT asylum seekers has been repeatedly… Read more »

Gay clubs raided and dating app shut down in ‘alarming’ crackdown on LGBT people in Belarus

LGBT people in yet another former Soviet state are facing an “alarming” crackdown. Two clubs popular with the LGBT community in Belarus were raided this weekend, with customers harassed and detained by police. Gay-rights activists hold placards on February 14, 2011 during a rally against homophobia in Minsk. Gay rights activists said they held their… Read more »

A man tortured in Chechnya for being gay dares to go public with his story

Moscow — For the first time since gruesome accounts of the systematic detention and torture of gay men began leaking out of Russia’s republic of Chechnya, a young man has gone public with his story. Maxim Lapunov, 30, told reporters on Monday that he was demanding justice from the Russian government for the 12 days… Read more »

Same-Sex Couples Wed in Germany as Marriage Law Takes Effect

Berlin — Cheers rang out in the City Hall of Berlin’s Schöneberg district on Sunday as two men, who met 38 years ago, when the German capital was a divided city, became the country’s first same-sex couple to legally marry. The couple, Bodo Mende, 60, and Karl Kreile, 59, were wed in a civil ceremony,… Read more »

Why Are HIV Rates on the Rise Among Europe’s Older Adults?

New research published this week in the “Lancet” shows a sharp upward trend in HIV diagnosis rates among adults over 50 in Europe. What explains this alarming increases, and how can we reduce transmission risk? Conducted by the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control, the study examined the diagnoses rates of 31 European countries… Read more »

UK’s first same-sex Anglican church wedding takes place

The first same-sex wedding in a UK Anglican church has taken place in Scotland. The Church of England and Church in Wales are both legally banned from carrying out same-sex weddings, but the Scottish branch of Anglicanism, the Scottish Episcopal Church, is not bound by the same laws. In a break from traditional Anglican teachings,… Read more »

Lost portrait of King James’s gay lover resurfaces after 400 years

A lost portrait of King James’s rumoured gay lover has been found after more than 400 years. The portrait, by Flemish artist Peter Paul Rubens, was rediscovered hanging in a property in Glasgow, where it had been assumed it was a copy. However the painting, was verified to be real by antiquities expert Dr Bendor… Read more »

Montenegro: Gay pride event urges less violence, more rights

Podgorica, Montenegro – About 200 people have gathered at an LGBT pride event in Montenegro urging more rights and zero tolerance for violence against gay people in the conservative Balkan country. Participants held banners with sayings such as “Proud my son is gay” and “My daughter is lesbian” as they marched Saturday through the Montenegrin… Read more »

Serbia’s First Openly Gay Prime Minister Attends Belgrade Pride March

Serbia’s first-ever openly gay prime minister joined gay activists Sunday at a pride march held amid tight security in the conservative Balkan country. Belgrade, Serbia — Serbia’s first openly gay prime minister joined several hundred gay activists Sunday at a gay pride march that was held amid tight security in the conservative Balkan country. Holding… Read more »

Serbia’s gay PM is first in region to attend pride parade

The prime minister of Serbia has become the first head of government in a Balkan country to take part in a gay pride march. Ana Brnabic is the first gay person, as well as the first woman, to lead Serbia. Gay pride parades in the country have not always gone ahead. Seven years ago, more… Read more »

Gay and displaced on the frontlines of Ukraine’s conflict

Fighting is not the only thing driving people from their homes in eastern Ukraine. Persecution is also forcing LGBTI people to flee. His claims of having a girlfriend met with scorn – one of his neighbours had told them everything. Unless Viktor could present the woman within 24 hours or pay a bribe he could… Read more »

Couple accidentally become first to marry in Faroe Islands

A couple who wanted a quiet, fuss-free wedding in the Faroe Islands have accidentally become the first gay couple to tie the knot there. London-based gay couple Leslie Travers and Richard McBride, 48 and 37, became the first same-sex couple to marry in the Faroe Islands after travelling there for a low-key wedding The Faroe… Read more »

Hate crime against gay and bisexual people in Britain rises by 78 per cent

Hate crime against gay, lesbian and bisexual people in Britain has risen by a massive 78 per cent in the last four years. The proportion of gay, lesbian and bisexual people who have experienced a hate crime rose from nine per cent in 2013 up to 16 per cent in 2017. The new research by… Read more »

Trump picks openly gay former diplomat and cancer survivor Ric Grenell as ambassador to Germany

Grenell was also considered as a possible envoy to both the UN and NATO His posting in Germany has to be confirmed by the U.S. Senate Grenell, 50, would be the first openly gay ambassador in Trump’s administration He’s a non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma survivor and co-created a mobile app that helps cancer patients customize and track… Read more »

Scottish same-sex couple adoptions double in three years

Figures released this month show that adoptions in Scotland by same-sex couples have doubled since 2013. There have been 97 same-sex adoptions in Scotland so far, prompting hopes that a 100th same-sex adoption will be announced within 2017 statistics. The statistics from National Records Scotland show that 5.7 percent of all adoptions were to same-sex couples… Read more »

Region responds to homophobic hate with first ever LGBT Pride event

A British county is hosting its first Pride event in response to a recent rise in homophobic hate crime. Worcestershire in the West Midlands has seen a dramatic rise in homophobic hate crime since 2015, when 18 incidents were reported. 40 such incidents occurred in Worcestershire from April 2016 to March 2017 – and in… Read more »

Door Opens to Achieving Marriage Equality in Czech Republic

Issue is on the Agenda for October’s Parliamentary Elections If it was up to the thousands who participated in last week’s Prague Pride, it’s clear the Czech Republic would be joining the growing list of countries legalizing same-sex marriage. Marriage equality was a major theme during Prague Pride Week, which prominently featured a lesbian couple… Read more »

Germany to begin gay weddings in October

Germany’s President Frank-Walter Steinmeier has signed the country’s equal marriage law. Equal marriage passed through the lower house in the German Parliament last month, after Chancellor Angela Merkel caved in to demands from opposition parties. The country’s right-wing Chancellor, who has blocked equal marriage for more than a decade, reversed her long-standing policy to allowed her own MPs to… Read more »

Revealed: LGBT Asians forced into heterosexual arranged marriages, police say

Hundreds of gay and lesbian people in the UK are being forced into arranged heterosexual marriages, research has found. West Midlands Police say the number of people contacting them regarding a forced straight marriage has markedly increased. The force say they had at least 30 cases of LGBT people contacting them regarding forced marriages in… Read more »

First Muslim drag queen says there have been ‘countless’ Muslim gay marriages

Asifa Lahore, Britain’s first Muslim drag queen, says there have been “countless” same-sex Muslim weddings. She also revealed that there is a “thriving” LGBT community among Muslims in the UK. In an interview with The Times, Asifa said “in the last three years I’ve been to dozens of gay Muslim, same-sex marriages. “I attended one… Read more »

Serbia’s openly gay Prime Minister says her sexuality has never been an issue

Serbia’s out Prime Minister Ana Brnabic insists her sexuality has never been an issue in the country. Ms Brnabic was appointed as the country’s PM by Serbia’s conservative President Aleksandar Vucic, making her one of three out leaders in office around the world today. The other two openly gay leaders, Ireland’s Leo Varadkar and Luxembourg’s… Read more »

For many gay men in conservative Chechnya, living in fear for their lives is commonplace

They call themselves survivors. Two Chechen men who agreed to share their story say they have been forced into hiding and their lives are in danger simply because they are gay. They say they are so afraid, even with a place in a secret safe house outside of Moscow, that they asked ABC News’ “Nightline”… Read more »

Couple married in one of UK’s first gay Muslim weddings suffer online abuse

‘You can’t be a gay Muslim, if you are then you’re not a Muslim’ A couple who had one of the UK’s first same-sex marriages involving a Muslim partner have received online abuse after their wedding. Jahed Choudhury and Sean Rogan married last week in Walsall, in the West Midlands. Footage from the ceremony showed… Read more »