Facebook Faces Russian Backlash Over Gay Marriage Icons

Facebook’s recently-launched relationships status icons identifying gay and lesbian users who are married have prompted a backlash against the social networking site in Russia. Facebook added the new married icons to Timeline, Facebook’s alternative profile which allows users to highlight photos, posts and life events chronologically. One icon includes two brides, the other two grooms.… Read more »

3,000 march at incident-free Budapest Pride

Budapest Pride 2012 took place safely on Saturday despite earlier threats and the mayor’s unwillingness to support the event. Over 3,000 marchers took to the streets protected by riot police. According to organiser Szilvia Nagy, it was the most popular pride so far in the city. The procession included human rights organisations, ambassadors, opposition politicians… Read more »

Russian Gay Activists Arrested In St. Petersburg

St. Petersburg, Russia — Russian police have broken up attempts to hold two gay rights rallies in St. Petersburg, which this spring adopted a law against spreading “homosexual propaganda.” Three rally organizers were arrested Saturday at a park in Russia’s second city, and five others were detained at a later rally attempt near the landmark… Read more »

Ukraine Postpones Vote On ‘Gay Gag Rule’

The Ukrainian Parliament on Friday canceled a scheduled vote on a bill which would ban citizens from speaking favorably about gay men and lesbians. If approved, Law 8711 would make it illegal to “spread homosexuality” by “holding meetings, parades, actions, demonstrations and mass events aiming at intentional distribution of any positive information about homosexuality.” Offenders… Read more »

European Parliament condemns violence against lesbians in Africa

The European Parliament yesterday adopted a resolution on violence against lesbian women and gay and transgender rights more generally in Africa. MEPs acted in response to increasing reports of arrests and violence against LGBTI people, and particularly lesbian women, on the continent. Recently, there has been increasing reports of arrests of lesbian women in Cameroon.… Read more »

Montenegrin delegation for the first time on LGBT EuroGames – Budapest

“EuroGames”, the largest European LGBT sport manifestation in which for the first time the Montenegrin delegation took part, took place in Budapest between the 27th of June and the 1st of July of 2012. This year’s EuroGames, which basically represent the European equivalent to the Olympic Games are officially supported by the International Olympic committee… Read more »

A Host Unable to Kick Its Tattered Reputation

Elton John Pleads for Gay Tolerance at Concert Kiev, Ukraine — There was an element of mercy in the final whistle of the Euro 2012 soccer championships on Sunday night, not for Italy, which was routed by Spain, but for Ukraine, a tournament co-host, which over four weeks of worldwide attention had its already flagging… Read more »

Stonewall launches advice leaflets for gay tourists in Britain

Gay rights charity Stonewall has launched a series of multilingual leaflets designed to promote gay freedoms in Britain to foreign visitors. The polyglot range will advise gay visitors of the legal protections available to them and what to do if they run into difficulties in the UK. ‘You’re Welcome!’ will be available in English, French,… Read more »

Budapest: MEPs open gay EuroGames 2012

Members of the European Parliament have taken part in the official opening of theEuroGames 2012 in Budapest, the Hungarian capital. Each year, the EuroGames gather LGBT athletes and their friends. More than 2,000 participants from 34 European countries are taking part in this year’s Games. However, the Budapest Assembly and the Mayor of Budapest declined… Read more »

Serbia: “The ‘Accidental’ Belgrade Pride”

Amila Bosnae interviews Boban Stojanovic, one of the organizers of the “accidental” gay pride parade in Belgrade – which went without incidents: “There were just over 50 of us. You see, this wasn’t a real Pride, but a small street action. We’re happy with it because as activists, we always remember the words of Margaret… Read more »

Bulgaria gay parade peaceful, despite provocations

A gay pride march in the Bulgarian capital Sofia stayed peaceful Saturday, but homosexuality remains a sensitive issue across the Balkans. Istanbul, Turkey – A Pride Parade in Bulgaria passed without threatened violence yesterday, but homosexuality remains a sensitive issue across the Balkans. In the weeks before, fears of violence had been stoked by provocative… Read more »

Bulgaria: Action, not just words, needed to tackle anti-gay hate crimes

An urgent overhaul of Bulgarian laws is needed to ensure that hate crimes which all too frequently target gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people are properly investigated and prosecuted, Amnesty International recommends in a briefing published today. “Dozens of LGBT people have been beaten, raped, and in one case murdered because of their real… Read more »

German court tells lesbian asylum seeker to hide identity in Iran

A German court rejected the asylum application of Samira Ghorbani Danesh, an Iranian lesbian refugee who fled Iran in 2009, with the justification that she can hide her homosexuality in Iran and avoid criminal penalties. In a telephone interview on Thursday with, Katayun Pirdawari, who is a German-Iranian and a member of the Lesbian… Read more »

Bulgaria: Government ‘should condemn priest’s call for stoning at Pride’

The Bulgarian justice minister has been called on to repudiate a priest’s call for physical violence against Pride marchers in the country’s capital city. The Human Rights Watch group has written to Justice Minister Diana Kovacheva expressing concern over the unchecked remarks made by Father Evgeni Yanakiev of the Bulgarian Orthodox Church, to which most… Read more »

A Lesbian Story: One Simple, but not Simple Story

I have a name. I live in Montenegro. I am daughter, sister, aunt, friend, colleague. I have a wonderful family. Job. Value. Principles. Person you love and who loves me. Maybe I know. If not, here’s something about me. Family means a lot to me. I feel them as a support and safety. I admire… Read more »

Last known gay Jewish survivor of the Holocaust dies

The last known gay Jewish survivor of the Holocaust has passed away in Berlin, just days before he was due to celebrate his 89th birthday, the Jerusalem Post reports. Gad Beck was an Zionist resistance fighter during the Second World War, and, in post-war Germany, a bold campaigner for gay rights when homosexuality was still… Read more »

Podgorica: LGBT flag set on fire in front of the Ombudsman

The flag was placed on the mast of the building where the office of the Ombudsman, was burned last night, said the LGBT Forum Progres. Officials of Institutions Ombudsman contacted the police, who immediately went to the scene. Unknown persons set fire to the rainbow flag, a symbol of the LGBT community. Forum notes that… 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 »

Denmark: Newspaper editor refuses to write about gay marriage laws

A Danish newspaper editor said he would refuse to include any news about the country’s recently-implemented equal marriage laws. The laws allowing gay couples in Denmark an equal right to marry in state churches came into force last week. But a newspaper editor in northern Jutland refused to include stories about the new law, which… Read more »

London: First national conference on LGBT end of life care tomorrow

The first ever national conference on end of life care for LGBT people will take place this Thursday in London. Policymakers, service providers, academics and people who are themselves dying will come together on Thursday to discuss how to improve end of life care for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people. The conference is organised… Read more »

Preparations for the parade in Montenegro 2013

In June next year will be held in Podgorica pride parade, with the support of the Ombudsman and the relevant institutions. Deputy of human rights and freedoms of Marijana Lakovic will be representative of the institution in the organizing committee of the first Gay Pride Parade, scheduled to be held in June next year in… Read more »

Denmark: Equal marriage laws for gay couples come into effect today

Denmark’s new laws allowing gay couples to marry in the state church have come into effect today. The Folketing approved gender-neutral marriage last week by 85 votes to 24. The Stefanskirken in Copenhagen draped a rainbow flag over its front and erected a banner reading: “Love knows no gender – congratulations Denmark”. Danish gay news… Read more »

Croatia Gay Pride march held under heavy security

Split, Croatia(Reuters) – Hundreds of people in the Croatian city of Split marched in a Gay Pride parade held on Saturday under heavy security to avoid a repeat of last year’s violence. About 500 people, including some government ministers, took part in the march, police said, with around 900 policemen patrolling it. Participants said this… Read more »

Gay march key tolerance test for EU-bound Croatia

Split, Croatia (AFP) — Hundreds of riot police were on guard Saturday as Croatia’s second city hosted a gay parade seen as a test of tolerance in the EU-bound country after violence last year left a dozen people injured. More than 500 people — many carrying the rainbow flags which are symbol of gay activism… Read more »

Croatia Gives Split Gay Pride Heavy Police Guard

Interior Ministry is deploying 900 police to secure Saturday’s Gay Pride parade in the coastal city – three times the number of expected participants. The Dalmatian city of Split woke up on Friday decorated with knitted rainbow flags in preparation for the gay march due to kick off on Saturday afternoon. Some 900 officers, including… Read more »

Danish parliament approves equal marriage laws

The Danish parliament has approved equal marriage laws 85 to 24 today, reports said today. Members of the sole house of the Folketing approved the gender-neutral marriage legislation today after an opposition amendment creating a separate system of marriage for gay couples under different terminology was rejected yesterday. The new law is due to come… Read more »

Video: Pro-gay fly-posting campaign disturbed in Montenegro

An LGBT youth group in Montenegro has initiated a nocturnal campaign to put up pro-gay posters  around the capital city of Podgorica. Following the International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia, the Montenegrin group Juventas printed pink posters with the slogan: “Every day is a day of fight against homophobia and transphobia. Live your life.” Montenegro… Read more »

Spain and Portugal: from tyrants to toleration

Brussel – On a map of Europe where green is gay-friendly and red is not, an olive-coloured peninsula in the west brings a little variety to an otherwise yellowish south. Both Spain and Portugal, in a little over one generation, have gone from being among the most repressive to the most egalitarian societies for LGBT… Read more »

East Europe Gays,Lesbians March in Show of Pride

Warsaw, Poland (AP) – Hundreds of gays, lesbians and their supporters marched Saturday through the capitals of Poland and Latvia, demanding more rights in Eastern European societies where they still face high levels of intolerance. The parades were supported by the governments of the United States and other Western countries who are pushing for an… Read more »

French prime minister: Equal marriage and adoption laws to be introduced ‘quickly’

The French prime minister Jean-Marc Ayrault told a French television station this morning a change in legislation to allow gay couples to marry and adopt children will be done ‘quickly’ and that a draft is ‘ready’. According to French news website, M Ayrault told radio station RMC and TV station BFMTV this morning that… Read more »

60,000 sign petition against Ukraine anti-gay gag law

Activists call on Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych to stand up for LGBT rights ahead of EU delegation A petition signed by over 60,000 people, calling on the Ukrainian president to denounce an anti-gay ‘propaganda’ bill, will appear in one of Kyiv’s biggest newspapers on Friday (1 June). The online letter by gay rights group,… Read more »

Croatian city of Split divided over gay pride after violent clashes

Split authorities force change to LGBT pride route after attacks last year. Gay organizers will appeal in court Authorities in the Croatian city of Split should allow the local gay pride march to stick to its route and make sure it is properly protected, Human Rights Watch has said today (31 May). Last year’s pride… Read more »

Croatian city of Split divided over gay pride after violent clashes

Split authorities force change to LGBT pride route after attacks last year. Gay organizers will appeal in court Authorities in the Croatian city of Split should allow the local gay pride march to stick to its route and make sure it is properly protected, Human Rights Watch has said today (31 May). Last year’s pride… Read more »

Petition urges Ukraine president to stop anti-gay gag law

Generation will be ‘forced into the shadows’ if anti-gay ‘propaganda’ law is passed Activists have launched a petition calling on the president of the Ukraine to denounce an anti-gay ‘propaganda’ bill. The bill, similar to the one passed in St Petersburg, is expected to be voted on this week and would amend existing laws on… Read more »

Nikolai Alexeyev Arrested In Attempted Moscow Gay Pride Parade

Nikolai Alexeyev was among the roughly dozen activists arrested Sunday attempting to hold a Gay Pride parade in downtown Moscow. The administration of Moscow Mayor Sergey Sobyanin had rejected the activists’ application to hold a Gay Pride event in the city for the seventh year in a row. Organizer Alexeyev said the rally would be… Read more »

IDAHO in St. Petersburg Celebrated Despite Attacks

Today St. Petersburg LGBT community commemorated International Day against Homophobia and Transphobia by holding an officially authorized mass rally. Over 300 people gathered in Petrovsky park in St. Petersburg. However, not all of those present came to support the ideas of  tolerance and non-violence to LGBT. About 100-150 members of nationalist, soccer-fan, and aggressive clerical… Read more »

Eurovision winner speaks out against Azerbaijan gay rights record

Sweden’s Loreen met with human rights activists before winning the international pop contest Eurovision winner Loreen, who stormed to victory last night (26 May) at the Eurovision Song Contest, has spoken publicly about Azerbaijan’s gay rights record. The Swedish pop star met with human rights activists this week in the capital to encourage their fight… Read more »

Gay rights in Africa have ‘worsened’

Amnesty International global human rights report shows Europe lacks sufficient laws to combat LGBT persecution Amnesty International claims anti-gay discrimination has increased in Africa, while Europe lacks sufficient legislation to protect LGBT rights. In its 50th global human rights report, Amnesty described the situation in Africa as having ‘worsened’. It says politicians have failed to… Read more »

Baltic Pride in Latvia will not be banned

Gay rights campaigners hail decision not to ban pride event in Riga as a ‘sign of change’ Authorities in Latvia say they will not ban Baltic Pride, despite a crackdown on LGBT rights and attacks on marches across eastern Europe. Riga City Council has told organizers that the Mozaika pride march on 2 June poses… Read more »