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WORLD Glenn Greenwald, Swiss chocolatier, Chick-fil-A, South Korean trans soldier

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A coalition of approximately 40 human-rights and free-speech NGOs signed an open letter—organized by Freedom of the Press Foundation and Reporters Without Borders—addressed to Brazilian authorities ( including President Jair Bolsonaro ) condemning the charges that the Brazilian federal prosecutor's office brought against out U.S. journalist Glenn Greenwald, a press release noted. The charges must be now be examined by a federal judge, who could dismiss them. Last year, Greenwald and journalists from investigative journalism magazine The Intercept Brasil, where he was an editor, released several messages exchanged via telegram between members of the investigation team of Operation Car Wash; the messages implicated members of Brazil's judiciary system and of the Operacao Lava-Jato task force.

The CEO of premium Swiss chocolatier Laderach defended anti-gay comments about same-sex marriage, saying he can't be homophobic because he employs gay people and "has a zero-tolerance policy regarding discrimination," PinkNews noted. Johannes Laderach—a 33-year-old evangelical Christian and head of Swiss chocolatier Laderach—opposes same-sex marriage and abortion rights and is a member of the anti-LGBT+, anti-abortion organisation Christianity for Today.

Chick-fil-A quietly shut its only Scottish outlet after a furious public backlash over its funding of anti-LGBT causes, The Herald reported. The fast-food chain opened in the food court of the Macdonald Aviemore Resort in October; however, the move quickly attracted criticism after it emerged the chain pumped millions of dollars into organisations which actively oppose same-sex marriage. Scottish Greens co-leader Patrick Harvie encouraged a boycott of the restaurant and other MacDonald hotels across the country.

A South Korean transgender soldier said she will sue the army after it dismissed her for violating regulations following her gender change, the BBC reported. Byun Hui-soo, 22, joined the army as a man, but had gender-reassignment surgery last year after suffering from gender dysphoria and mental health issues. She accused the military of "deep-rooted intolerance" of sexual minorities.

Just before families around the globe celebrated Lunar New Year, the Human Rights Campaign ( HRC ) and the National Queer Asian Pacific Islander Alliance ( NQAPIA ) announced its resource to coming out as LGBTQ for Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders has been translated to Vietnamese, Simplified Chinese, Korean and Japanese, a press release noted. "Being LGBTQ does not make you any less Asian, Pacific Islander or any other national heritage or ethnic or racial identity you may hold," said Glenn Magpantay, executive director of NQAPIA. The translated guides are at

Israel and Russia signed a new adoption agreement that will effectively block LGBT Israelis from adopting Russian children, The Moscow Times noted. Russia banned adoption by LGBT couples and individuals from countries that allow same-sex marriage in 2013. Israel has been complying with this law through a de facto arrangement in the years since it passed, the Haaretz news outlet reported in 2017. While it doesn't explicitly mention LGBT adoption, the new agreement says all adoptions between Russia and Israel must comply with Russian law.

Advocacy meets suspense in Welcome to Chechnya, which ran during this year's Sundance Film Festival, TheWrap noted. "Welcome" is an examination of both the brutality that the Chechen LGBT community is forced to face on a daily basis as well as the difficulty of leaving the country for peace and safety. The movie is directed by David France, whose Oscar-nominated How to Survive a Plague showed how gay men and their allies in 1980s New York City stepped up to face the HIV/AIDS crisis in the face of government indifference, and whose film The Death and Life of Marsha P. Johnson used the ongoing investigation into the death of a legendary trans activist to examine transphobia in the NYPD and other government institutions.

Rapper J Hus accused Europeans of "forcing LGBT onto" Africa and "weaponising" homosexuality in a series of tweets about colonization, The Independent reported. Following a backlash on Twitter, he said, "Trust me i ain't homophobic. The more gay men the more women for me. If you want come kill me. I know what I'm saying."

Russian feminist/LGBTQ-rights activist Yulia Tsvetkova—already under house arrest for two months on charges of pornography distribution—faces new charges of allegedly violating Russia's "gay propaganda" law, Human Rights Watch noted. In the new charges, police claim Tsvetkova, 26, violated the country's "gay propaganda" law by posting on social media her drawing, depicting two same-sex couples with children and the caption "Family is where love is. Support LGBT+ families!" Tsvetkova already faces up to six years imprisonment for the pornography charge.

An LGBT book collector "passionate about justice" left his 30,000-piece collection to the University of London, the BBC reported. Jonathan Cutbill, a founder of Gay's The Word bookshop, died last May at age 82. His collection, which dates back to 1760, will be moved from his Shrewsbury home to the university.

The de facto civilian leader of Myanmar noticed that a post about the Chinese president's visit was translated on her Facebook page with a glaring error, The Independent noted. Daw Aung San Suu Kyi realized that President Xi Jinping's name was, in part,s translated to "Mr Sh*thole" in English; Google Translate did not feature the same mistake. Facebook apologized and said that its system did not have the president's name in its Burmese database, so the site "guessed" the translation.

Seven-time Grand Slam champion John McEnroe criticized Margaret Court over the legendary Australian tennis player's homophobic comments, The Sporting News reported. In a video published to the Eurosport website, McEnroe calls Tennis Australia's public relations conundrum surrounding the 50th anniversary of Court's calendar Grand Slam "a nightmare," and says the 77-year-old's comments belong in the past. "There's only one thing longer than the list of Margaret Court's tennis achievement: it's her list of offensive and homophobic statements," McEnroe said.

RuPaul's Drag race alumna Nina West has teamed with the company HOMAGE to release The Nina West Foundation X HOMAGE limited-edition AUSTRALIA T-shirt, a press release noted. This limited edition blue and yellow t-shirt benefits Wildlife Victoria, an Australian based nonprofit that specializes in protecting and rescuing native Australian wildlife injured and displaced by the current wildfires. The T-shirt is available now at, with all proceeds going directly to Wildlife Victoria.

In the latest in a string of delayed shows and cancellations, pop queen Madonna has just cancelled the first London show of her Madame X tour, PinkNews noted. The show was slated to take place Jan. 27. In a statement, Madonna said, "Under doctor's guidance, I have been told to rest for a few days. As you all know I have injuries that have plagued me since the beginning of the tour but I must always listen to my body and put my health first." This marks the singer's 10th cancellation, coming after two shelved sets in Lisbon last week.

On Jan. 4, Icelandic composer Hildur Guonadottir became the first solo woman to win a Golden Globe for Best Original Score, for Joker—and she has earned an Oscar nomination for Best Original Score, Rolling Stone noted. A classically trained cellist, Guonadottir has been composing for film and television for nearly two decades. While the plaudits have poured in for her work on Joker and Chernobyl ( she won an Emmy for the latter last fall ), her previous credits include films like The Oath, Mary Magdalene and Sicario: Day of the Soldado.

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