Australia House of Representatives approves same-sex marriage bill

By : MICHAEL K. LAVERS of the Washington Blade, courtesy of the National LGBT Media Association
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The Australian House of Representatives on Thursday nearly unanimously approved a bill that would extend marriage rights for same-sex couples.

The vote took place less than a week after the bill passed in the Australian Senate by a 43-12 vote margin.

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Austrian constitutional court legalizes same-sex marriage

By : wire report
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BERLIN (AP) — Austria’s Constitutional Court has ruled that same-sex couples will be allowed to marry by the beginning of 2019, bringing the country in line with more than a dozen other western European nations.

In a ruling announced Tuesday, the court said that the words “two people of different sex” will be removed from the law on marriage at the end of 2018 on the grounds that the distinction is discriminatory. Same-sex couples will be able to marry after that, unless the government decides to change the laws earlier.

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LGBT candidates run in Honduras elections

By : Ernesto Valle OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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ABOVE: Rihanna Ferrera is a transgender woman who ran for the Honduras Congress. Photo courtesy of Rihanna Ferrera

TEGUCIGALPA, Honduras — Opponents of Honduran President Juan Orlando Hernández have taken to the streets amid growing concerns that his government committed fraud in the country’s presidential election.

The election took place on Nov. 26 and early results were announced that night. With 57 percent of the votes counted, Hernández was trailing opposition candidate Salvador Nasralla, a former journalist, by a five point margin.

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Lawmaker proposes during Australian same-sex marriage debate

By : wire report
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CANBERRA, Australia (AP) — An Australian lawmaker giving a speech on same-sex marriage proposed to his gay partner Monday during Parliament’s debate on a bill that is expected to soon legalize marriage equality across the country.

Tim Wilson, a 37-year-old lawmaker in the conservative coalition government, was among the first lawmakers to join the House of Representatives debate and toward the end of his speech popped the question to his partner of seven years Ryan Bolger, who was watching from the public gallery.

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Tanzania arrests 1 of 2 women seen kissing in online video

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DODOMA, Tanzania (AP) — Tanzanian police are holding one of two women accused of kissing in a video widely circulated on social media.

Ahmed Msangi, police chief in Tanzania’s Mwanza region, said authorities arrested the woman in the northwestern region of Geita and are looking for the other woman and some others seen in the video.

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Transgender rights bill introduced in Guatemala

By : Michael K. Lavers OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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ABOVE: Guatemalan Congresswoman Sandra Moran, third from left, stands with transgender rights advocates on Dec. 1, 2017, after she introduced a trans rights bill in the country’s Congress. Photo courtesy of Visibles

Editor’s note: Visibles, a Guatemalan LGBTI website and advocacy group, originally published this article.

GUATEMALA CITY — Guatemalan Congresswoman Sandra Moran on Dec. 1 introduced a bill to recognize the right to gender identity and allow for transgender people to amend their birth certificates to coincide with their self-identification. The bill was presented with support from trans organizations, which had worked on initial drafts since 2009.

As the Congress’ 2017 session will finish in the coming days, activists expect to mobilize support for initiative. They expect the debate on it will begin in 2018.

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American’s fatal fall off Sydney cliff ruled gay hate crime

By : wire report
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CANBERRA, Australia (AP) — Almost three decades after the naked body of an American mathematician was found at the base of a Sydney cliff, a judge ruled Thursday that he was the victim of a gay hate crime.

It was the third coronial inquest — a court-like proceeding held after unusual deaths — to investigate the circumstances surrounding Scott Johnson’s fatal fall at North Head on Dec. 8, 1988.

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Gay U.S. couple arrested in Thailand for exposing their butts at Thai temple

By : MARIAH COOPER OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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A couple is facing jail time for exposing their butts at the Temple of Dawn in Bangkok, Thailand.

Travis and Joseph Dasilva, both 38, run the Instagram account “Traveling Butts,” which features pictures of the couple exposing their butts at international locations. The Instagram account has since been deleted.

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FIFA advisers: ‘Danger’ for LGBTQ fans at World Cup in Russia

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MOSCOW (AP) – FIFA’s anti-discrimination advisers are warning gay soccer fans going to the 2018 World Cup in Russia that displays of affection could be met with an aggressive response from intolerant locals.

Homosexuality was decriminalized in Russia in 1993, but anti-gay sentiment remains strong and intensified after a law was introduced in 2013 prohibiting dissemination to minors of “propaganda” legitimizing homosexuality.

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Prominent activist heckles Russian ambassador over Chechnya

By : MICHAEL K. LAVERS of the Washington Blade, courtesy of the National LGBT Media Association
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A prominent activist on Wednesday heckled Russia’s ambassador to the U.S. over the anti-LGBT crackdown in Chechnya.

A video posted to Michael Petrelis’ Facebook page shows him shouting “Stop killing gay Chechens” at Anatoly Antonov as he was delivering a speech at the Fairmont Hotel in San Francisco.

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Canada apologizes to victims of anti-LGBT government laws, policies

By : MICHAEL K. LAVERS of the Washington Blade, courtesy of the National LGBT Media Association
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Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Tuesday apologized to those who suffered persecution and discrimination under the country’s anti-LGBT laws and policies.

Trudeau — who spoke in the Canadian House of Commons — formally apologized to Canadians who were convicted of “gross indecency” before the country decriminalized consensual same-sex sexual relations in 1969. He also announced the introduction of a bill that would expunge the criminal records of those who were prosecuted under the law.

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Australia Senate approves same-sex marriage bill

By : MICHAEL K. LAVERS of the Washington Blade, courtesy of the National LGBT Media Association
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The Australian Senate has approved a bill that would extend marriage rights to same-sex couples.

Lawmakers approved the measure by a 43-12 vote margin. The Australian House of Representatives will now consider the bill.

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