Civil partnerships bill sparks debate in Thailand

By : Victor Maung OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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Thailand could become the first country in Asia to endorse same-sex marriage after a bill that would allow same-sex unions was approved.

The country’s Cabinet approved the civil partnership bill on Dec. 25, which has sparked debate among members of the LGBTI community. The move is seen as a milestone in efforts to improve legal rights for the estimated 6 million LGBTI people — an estimated 8 percent of the country’s total population — who live in Thailand.

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Singapore DJ mounts challenge of colonial-era anti-gay law

By : wire report
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SINGAPORE (AP) | A Singaporean disc jockey is challenging a law that bans sex between men, a holdover from British colonial days that conservatives insist on keeping but authorities have promised not to enforce.

The case brought this week by Johnson Ong, whose stage name is DJ Big Kid, is the first against the anti-gay law since an appeal by three people was thrown out by the Supreme Court in 2014.

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Countries use registration laws to hinder LGBTI advocacy

By : Michael K. Lavers OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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Russian LGBT Sports Federation President Alexander Agapov holds a rainbow flag during Russian President Vladimir Putin’s speech at the 2018 World Cup in Moscow. Russia is among the countries that use registration laws to hinder LGBTI advocacy efforts. (Photo courtesy Agapov)

A new report indicates governments around the world are using registration laws to target LGBTI advocacy groups.

The report, which OutRight Action International released on Tuesday, indicates 28 percent of the 194 countries surveyed have LGBTI groups that “cannot legally register as LGBTIQ organizations.”

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Pulse shooting inspires Singapore to take action

By : Wire Report
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Singapore (AP) – A tragedy half a world away has created an unlikely opening for a repressed community in Singapore.

The mass shooting at a gay club in Orlando, Florida, has galvanized LGBT people in Singapore, where a candlelight vigil was held June 13 to express solidarity with the victims. In the process, they highlighted the predicament of their own largely underground community.

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Singapore softens ban on HIV-positive visitors

By : Wire Report
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SINGAPORE (AP) — Singapore said Aug. 31 it has lifted a two-decade ban on HIV-infected people from entering the country, but will limit their stay to a maximum of three months.

The Health Ministry said the ban was lifted on April 1, “given the current context with more than 5,000 Singapore residents living with HIV and the availability of effective treatment for the disease.”

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Singapore stands behind call to destroy all copies of three gay-themed books

By : Wire Report
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SINGAPORE (AP) – A children’s book inspired by a real-life story of two male penguins raising a baby chick in New York’s zoo has been deemed inappropriate by state-run Singapore libraries, and the conservative city-state’s information minister said he supports the decision to destroy all copies alongside two other titles.

The National Library Board, which runs 26 public libraries in Singapore, pulled from the shelves and said it would “pulp” the copies of three titles, citing complaints their content goes against Singapore’s family values.

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