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Moscow bans gay parades for next 100 years; gay play in Uganda
World news: Special to the online edition of Windy City Times
by Andrew Davis, Windy CIty Times...
2012-08-21

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Nikolay Alekseyev. File photo


In Russia, a city court in Moscow upheld a decision to ban LGBT pride parades for the next 100 years, according to Advocate.com . The decision affirms a Moscow municipal government ruling that bans the events until May 2112. Gay-rights activist Nikolay Alekseyev said he plans to appeal the decision to the city's highest court and the European Court of Human Rights.

A play about a young gay man is being staged in the notoriously anti-gay country of Uganda, according to Advocate.com . The River and the Mountain recently premiered at a theater in Kampala, the capital of the East African country. The play (penned by a British playwright) focuses on a 29-year-old man whose mother tries to change her son's sexual orientation through so-called "conversion therapy" and even a witch doctor; the production ends with the protagonist's murder.

In Nepal, hundreds of LGBT-rights activists marched to the city of Pokhara to demand recognition as a third gender in citizen certificates, to allow marriage equality and to criminalize discrimination based on sexual orientation, according to KWQC.com . The participants were dressed in colorful clothes, and wore beads and other jewelry as they danced to Bollywood music played over loudspeakers while marching approximately two miles.

A Russian judge has found three members of the punk band Pussy Riot guilty of hooliganism and they have been sentenced to two years in jail, according to CBS News. The women were arrested in March after a guerrilla performance in Moscow's main cathedral calling for the Virgin Mary to protect Russia from Vladimir Putin. The members of the group include Yekaterina Samutsevich, described by Wikipedia as a 30-year-old computer programmer interested in LGBT issues. Madonna recently performed in Russia with the band's name on her back.

The so-called "hacktivist collective" Anonymous targeted Uganda's governmental websites in response to the country's anti-LGBT position, according to the Huffington Post. On Uganda Prime Minister Amama Mbabazi's website, a message read, in part, "Your violations of the rights of LGBT people have disgusted us. ALL people have the right to live in dignity free from the repression of someone else's political and religious beliefs." The hacking follows the country's first pride parade, held earlier this month in the city of Entebbe.

In the UK, authorities are seeking a South African in connection with the murder of a gay man in Brighton, Pink News noted. The body of Michael Polding, 63, was found at his home July 16. Sussex Police want to question South African Ricardo Pisano—also known as Brandon Victor Pillay—in connection with the murder, which they believe happened in May.

The Ukraine's moral watchdog said that Spongebob Squarepants is a gay cartoon character who is a "real threat" to the country's children, the Huffington Post reported. While policing media, the watchdog found a report on a conservative Catholic website that criticized several cartoon characters for their "promotion of homosexuality." The allegations in the report have been deemed so serious that the National Expert Commission for Protecting Public Morality is planning a meeting to discuss if the cartoons should be banned.

Britain's most senior Catholic, Cardinal Keith O'Brien, is refusing to talk with Scottish ministers in protest about their plans for marriage equality, Gay Star News reported. O'Brien made this decision following the Scottish government's support for the introduction of same-sex marriage and ahead of the parliamentary session in September. The earliest ceremonies could take place in Scotland by 2015.

In Brazil, Mario Domingos Grego, 46, and Gledson Perrone Cordeiro, 32, became the first same-sex couple to marry in the city of Sao Paulo without judicial intervention, according to On Top Magazine. Brazil, Latin America's most populous nation, currently recognizes same-sex couples with stable unions. Last year, a state court judge allowed two men to legally change their union into a full marriage.

In the UK, Nick Grimshaw—the new host of Radio 1's flagship breakfast show—talked about his sexuality with the Guardian, according to Pink News. Grimshaw, 28 (known as "Grimmy" to his fans), said that he is indeed gay and would "really like" to date out U.S. singer Frank Ocean. Radio 1 is a BBC-operated station that airs internationally; Grimshaw is now its most high-profile gay broadcaster.

Human-rights leaders criticized a "Gay Hate Day" that took place in the African country of Cameroon Aug. 21, according to Pink News. Yves Yomb, director of the LGBT-rights group Alternatives-Cameroun, said, "This anti-gay movement is misinforming Cameroonians. A poster announcing the 'Gay Hate Day' claims that hemorrhoids, incontinence and various infections are consequences of homosexuality." The pro-LGBT AllOut movement urged Cameroonian President Paul Biya to take a stand against this event and decriminalize homosexuality in the country.

The United Church of Canada has elected its first openly gay moderator, according to Pink News. At the church's 41st general council in Ottawa, Rev. Gary Paterson won edged 15 candidates to hold the highest position at Canada's largest Protestant church. Paterson is the first known openly gay person to head any mainstream Christian denomination. The moderator presides over meetings of the church's general council and executive, and is, essentially, the principal spokesperson.


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