Two gay men run for Guatemala Congress

By : Michael K. Lavers OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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GUATEMALA CITY | Two openly gay men are among the candidates who are running for seats in Guatemala’s congress.

Aldo Dávila, executive director of Asociación Gente Positiva, a Guatemala City-based HIV/AIDS service organization, is a member of the Winaq Movement, a leftist party that Rigoberta Menchú, an indigenous human rights activist who won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1992, founded. Otto René Félix is a member of the far-left Guatemalan National Revolutionary Unity (URNG) party, a one-time guerrilla movement that formally entered politics in 1998, two years after the signing of the peace accord that ended Guatemala’s decades-long civil war.

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ICE confirms 45 transgender women being held at Texas detention center

By : Michael K. Lavers OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement confirmed to the Washington Blade that it is currently housing 45 transgender women at a privately-run detention center in Texas.

Danielle Bennett on Feb. 5 said the trans women are being held at the South Texas Detention Complex in Pearsall, Texas. The GEO Group, a Florida-based company, operates the facility that is roughly 60 miles southwest of San Antonio.

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LGBTI migrants in Tijuana ‘seek opportunity to live’

By : Yariel Valdés González OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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TIJUANA, Mexico| Melani Sofía Rosales Quiñones, a transgender woman from Guatemala City, was on her way home one night in July 2017 when she saw a group of homophobes waiting for her. She said good evening to them and that alone provoked an atrocious attack.

“They hit me with bats and sticks,” Melani now recalls. “They broke my jaw and left jaw bone. I was in a coma in the hospital for three days and 15 days later I had surgery to reconstruct my face. They put in plates and screws. It took me four months to recover.”

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Gay men fight HIV/AIDS, taboos in Guatemalan town

By : Michael K. Lavers of the Washington Blade, courtesy of the National Gay Media Association
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(Top photo) David Meneses, left, speaks with Bryan López in El Tejar, Guatemala on Feb. 2, 2017.

EL TEJAR, Guatemala — The two volcanoes that rise from the countryside surrounding El Tejar, a town that is slightly more than an hour west of Guatemala City on the Pan-American Highway, were clearly visible on Thursday afternoon.

Children were riding their bicycles through a small park in the center of El Tejar as venders sold food and other items on the street. Bryan López, a 27-year-old nurse who lives in the nearby city of Chimaltenango, was talking about his efforts to combat the HIV/AIDS epidemic.

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