Philippines president appoints transgender woman to government

By : Michael K. Lavers of the Washington Blade, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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ABOVE: Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte, first row, third from left, with Dindi Tan, first row, fourth from left. Photo courtesy of Dindi Tan.

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte has appointed a transgender woman to his government.

Dindi Tan, a long-time LGBTQ activist in the Philippines, is director of the country’s Department of Agrarian Reform. Tan had previously been the department’s assistant program manager.

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LGBTQ activists in China seek to change marriage civil code

By : wire report
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ABOVE: Beijing LGBT Center supporters, photo via the Center’s Facebook page.

BEIJING (AP) | It was only after her partner’s death that He Meili realized the full meaning of marriage.

As a lesbian couple in China, He and Li Qin kept their ties largely unspoken, sometimes introducing themselves as cousins. This rarely bothered He until Li succumbed to complications from lupus in 2016, and Li’s parents demanded that He hand over the deed for their apartment and other property documents under Li’s name.

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Elton John blasts security guards with foul-mouthed rant over treatment of female fan

By : John Paul King of the washington blade, courtesy of the national LGBT media association
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Singer and LGBTQ icon Elton John lashed out verbally at security guards from the stage of his concert in Perth, Australia on Dec. 1, hurling expletives at them over their treatment of a woman in the audience.

The Grammy, Oscar, Tony and Golden Globe winner was in the middle of a performance at HBF Park Stadium when he exploded into a tirade full of four-letter words after spotting two concert security staffers attempting to remove the female fan from the stadium.

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Same-sex couple wins Denmark’s ‘Dancing With the Stars’

By : John Paul King of the washington blade, courtesy of the national LGBT media association
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ABOVE: Jakob Fauerby and Silas Holst on “Vild med dans.” (Photo by Henrik Ohsten/VildMedDans via Facebook)

In what seems to be fast becoming an international trend, Denmark’s version of “Dancing With the Stars” has made history by featuring a same-sex couple – and this time, they’re not only included, they’ve won the competition.

Jakob Fauerby, 42, and Silas Holst, 36, were paired together on the show – which is called “Vild med dans”- after Fauerby, an openly gay actor, decided he would ask to be paired with a man if he was selected for the show.

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US ambassador to Zambia ‘horrified’ by gay couple’s 15-year prison sentence

By : Michael K. Lavers of the Washington Blade, courtesy of the National LGBT Media Association
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ABOVE: U.S. Ambassador to Zambia Daniel Foote (Photo public domain)

The U.S. ambassador to Zambia has sharply criticized the sentencing of two men to 15 years in prison under the country’s colonial-era sodomy law.

“I was personally horrified to read yesterday about the sentencing of two men, who had a consensual relationship, which hurt absolutely no one, to 15 years imprisonment for ‘crimes against the order of nature’”, said Daniel Foote in a statement that Rights Africa published on its website on Nov. 29. “Meanwhile, government officials can steal millions of public dollars without prosecution, political cadres can beat innocent citizens for expressing their opinions with no consequences, or poachers/traffickers can kill numerous elephants, barbarically chainsaw and sell their tusks and face a maximum of only five years imprisonment in Zambia.”

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Prominent Haitian LGBTQ activist found dead

By : Michael K. Lavers of the Washington Blade, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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ABOVE: Charlot Jeudy, photo courtesy of Facebook.

A prominent LGBTQ activist in Haiti was found dead on Monday.

A member of Kouraj, a Haitian LGBTQ advocacy group, told the Associated Press that Charlot Jeudy’s body was found at his home in Port-au-Prince, the Haitian capital.

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Diversity marks latest class of US Rhodes Scholars

By : wire report
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ABOVE: Hera Jay Brown, photo via Hera Jay Brown’s Twitter.

Minorities make up the majority of the latest group of U.S. college students to be named Rhodes Scholars, and the class includes the first transgender woman selected for the prestigious program.

The Rhodes Trust announced the 32 selections late Saturday after two days of discussions over 236 applicants from 90 different colleges and universities across the country.

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Canadian diplomats highlight country’s LGBTQ rights record

By : Michael K. Lavers of the Washington Blade, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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ABOVE: Martin Loken, minister of political affairs at the Canadian Embassy in D.C. Photo courtesy of the Canadian Embassy in the U.S.

Two Canadian diplomats in the U.S. earlier this month highlighted their country’s efforts to promote LGBTQ rights.

“We are very much aligned in terms of strongly supporting the rights of LGBTQ persons, both at home and abroad,” said Martin Loken, minister of political affairs at the Canadian Embassy in D.C., on Nov. 14 during a reception that was part of the LGBTQ Victory Fund’s annual International LGBTQ Leaders Conference.

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Anti-LGBTQ hate crimes in El Salvador on the rise

By : Ernesto Valle of the Washington Blade, courtesy of the LGBT Media Association
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ABOVE: San Salvador, El Salvador (Washington Blade photo by Michael K. Lavers)

Editor’s note: The Washington Blade published a Spanish version of this story on Nov. 21.

SAN SALVADOR, El Salvador | Anti-LGBTQ hate crimes in El Salvador have increased over the last two months.

Unknown suspects in a vehicle on Oct. 27 stabbed Anahy Miranda Rivas, a 27-year-old transgender woman, with a knife on Los Héroes Boulevard in San Salvador and dragged her to death.

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Over 1,000 LGBTQ members hold pride in New Delhi, take on anti-trans bill

By : Wire Report
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NEW DELHI (AP) | More than 1,000 members of the LGBTQ community and their supporters marched through New Delhi Nov. 24 to celebrate India’s sexual diversity, which they said is progressing but still has a long way to go to become a more accepting place for them.

Carrying rainbow flags, balloons and placards and dancing to the beat of drums, they demanded self-identification in any gender for legal recognition rather than first registering as transgender and then providing proof of surgery to authorities, as suggested by a new government bill.

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UN LGBTQ rights watchdog talks visibility, global backlash

By : Michael K. Lavers of the Washington Blade, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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ABOVE: Victor Madrigal-Borloz, the U.N.’s LGBTQ rights watchdog, speaks at the ILGALAC Regional Conference in Bogotá, Colombia, on Nov. 20, 2019. Photo courtesy of Alice Ochsenbein.

The U.N.’s LGBTQ rights watchdog on Wednesday acknowledged the increased visibility of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer people around the world has prompted a global backlash.

“Visibility is the key to acceptance, but of course visibility also comes with the risk of backlash,” said Victor Madrigal-Borloz during a telephone interview from the Colombian capital of Bogotá.

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Same-sex kiss in Australian underwear ad sparks uproar

By : John Paul King of the Washington Blade, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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ABOVE: Bonds’ ad via Facebook.

Australian fashion brand Bonds has generated buzz and controversy on social media with its Christmas advertising campaign.

The brand specializes in underwear and socks – which means that much of its campaign imagery features people in their skivvies. The current Christmas campaign features different couples sharing romantic and intimate moments. It includes an image of two men – reportedly a couple in real life – sharing a tender kiss over breakfast, with the caption, “It’s the little moments that make the Christmas season so special.”

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