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Jamaican activist ends challenge to anti-sodomy law

The Associated Press reports: A young Jamaican gay rights activist who brought an unprecedented legal challenge to the Caribbean island’s anti-sodomy law has withdrawn the claim after growing fearful about violent backlashes, advocacy groups and colleagues said Friday. Last year, Javed Jaghai made headlines after initiating a constitutional court challenge to Jamaica’s 1864 law that … Continue reading

Africa

Sierra Leone threat: Stop activism or we’ll spread ebola rumor

Front Line Defenders, which supports human rights activists, issued this press release on Aug. 28: Sierra Leone – Threats against human rights defender Ms Mary Conteh On 28 August 2014, human rights defender Ms Mary Conteh received a call from an unknown number where the caller threatened to spread false information that she contracted Ebola … Continue reading

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Warning: Lebanon police call to entrap gay suspects

Lebanese police have intensified their campaign against LGBTI people by using arrestees’  mobile phones to try to entrap other allegedly gay men,  according to Helem, Lebanon’s LGBTQI advocacy organisation. Helem issued this warning today: URGENT ANNOUNCEMENT: Helem has learned that the Hobeich police station has been arresting individuals in Beirut and going through their WHATSAPP … Continue reading

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’76 Crimes’ on radio: The latest battles for LGBTI justice

  The Erasing 76 Crimes blog and the anti-gay laws of 76-plus countries moved to center stage last weekend during a 15-minute interview of editor/publisher Colin Stewart on the radio show/podcast “State of Belief.” The show’s host, the Rev. Welton Gaddy, called the blog “an invaluable resource” and then asked about: Why LGBT rights were … Continue reading

Middle East / North Africa

12 still in Lebanese jail 17 days after Turkish bath raid

Twelve men remain in detention 17 days after at total of 27 people were arrested at a Turkish bath during an Aug. 9 raid by Lebanon’s national police and security force. Helem, Lebanon’s LGBTQI advocacy organisation, provided that update today, citing the gay-friendly Lebanese human rights group The Legal Agenda. Helem stated: “An article on … Continue reading

Africa / Middle East / North Africa

Comment: Africa isn’t anti-gay, ‘just hopelessly confused’

An insightful commentary in the pan-African publication Mail & Guardian Africa notes not only that African countries are far from united in their attitudes toward homosexuality, but also that many individual countries have self-contradictory laws. An excerpt from the article “Forgive it. Africa is not anti-gay; the continent is just hopelessly confused”: In Cote d’Ivoire, … Continue reading

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Cameroon lesbians freed after 9 months awaiting trial

Two lesbians in southern Cameroon were released on Aug. 22 after nine months in prison awaiting trial on homosexuality charges. On Aug. 21, Liliane and Nicole each received a two-year prison sentence, which was converted into a three-year suspended sentence, according to their attorney, Michel Togué. In November 2013, the women were arrested and jailed  … Continue reading