Worldwide struggle for LGBTIQ rights: News from the front lines

News in brief from Zimbabwe, Singapore, Myanmar, Turkmenistan, Zambia, Ghana, Barbados, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, Indonesia, Russia and Jamaica.



Zimbabwe: Court rules in favor of trans woman who was arrested for using the ladies’ toilet in a bar. Award: U.S. $400,000. (iHarare)

Singapore: Three cases challenging Singapore’s anti-gay law get their day in court. (Thomson-Reuters)

Myanmar: Nation’s criminal law and justice system perpetuates stigmatization, discrimination, and human rights violations against its LGBTQ people, new report finds. (International Commission of Jurists)

Turkmenistan:  Doctor retracts statement that led to police probe and a two-week disappearance after he acknowledged he is gay. (Radio Free Europe)

Hakainde Hichilema should educate voters about LGBTI issues and work to protect trans and intersex Zambians, commentator Kapya Kaoma says. (Photo courtesy of Open Zambia)

Zambia (commentary by Kapya Kaoma): Instead of backing away from gay rights, presidential candidate Hakainde HichilemaI should declare that he would be a president for all Zambians. (Lusaka Times)

Ghana: Human Rights Watch urges Ghana to resist the anti-LGBT stance of the World Congress of Families. (HRW)

Barbados: Government ignores Inter-American Commission case against Barbados colonial-era anti-gay-sex law. (Barbados Today)

Lebanon: Nationwide protests that have thrown Lebanon into political and economic turmoil could end up being an opportunity for the LGBT+ community, according to the head of the country’s most prominent LGBT+ rights organisation. (Thomson-Reuters Foundation/Openly)

Saudi Arabia: Gay Saudi journalists detained in Australia after seeking asylum (Guardian)

Indonesia: Court rejects lawsuit by student journalists who were fired for publishing a short article about a lesbian relationship. (Jakarta Post)

Indonesian students protest firing of journalists over article about a lesbian relationship. (Apriadi Gunawan photo courtesy of Jakarta Post)

Jamaica: Both sides in gay-rights dispute agree that a national referendum would be a bad idea. (Gleaner)

Saudi Arabia: Amid Saudi tourism drive, government security agency labels feminism, atheism and homosexuality as “extremism.” (Thomson-Reuters Foundation/Openly)

Russia: Criminal charges filed against publisher of gay-friendly YouTube chat show (HRW)

Written by Colin Stewart

Colin Stewart is a 45-year journalism veteran living in Southern California. He is the president of the St. Paul’s Foundation for International Reconciliation, which supports LGBTQ+ rights advocacy journalism, and editor / publisher of Erasing 76 Crimes. Contact him at [email protected]

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