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WORLD Pope Francis, Jamaica official, Pakistani trans murder
by Andrew Davis, Windy City Times
2018-04-24

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Pope Francis has invited a gay man from Chile who was sexually abused by a priest to meet with him at the Vatican, The Washington Blade noted. Juan Carlos Cruz said during a telephone interview from Philadelphia that the pontiff invited him to be his "guest" at his official residence near St. Peter's Basilica April 26-May 1. Cruz is among the hundreds of people who Rev. Fernando Karadima sexually abused in his parish in El Bosque, a wealthy neighborhood in the Chilean capital of Santiago, for more than three decades.

The prime minister of Jamaica has said he would not object to a gay person serving in his cabinet, PinkNews reported. Andrew Holness, the country's leader since 2016, went against comments by one of his predecessors who proclaimed gay people should be banned from high office. Jamaica has a maximum penalty of life imprisonment for the crime of sodomy.

A transgender woman has been shot dead in Pakistan, making her the 56th trans person to be killed in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa region in the last three years, PinkNews reported. Sheena, who lived in the Shewa area, was allegedly attacked by a group of armed men who beat her up and then shot her dead. The death of the trans Afghan national, announced by TransAction Alliance, has put the community on alert after a surge in violence has affected the community.

In a landmark move, Italian authorities have now recognized a lesbian couple's baby, PinkNews noted. Chiara Foglietta was initially told by officials to say that she had sex with a man in order to get her child recognized in the country. Foglietta used artificial insemination in Denmark to become pregnant; she and partner Micaela Ghisleni welcomed their son, Niccolo Pietro, into the world April 13.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau will be given an LGBTQ rights award for his work to make Canada a more accepting place, Metro Weekly reported. The International Gay & Lesbian Travel Association ( IGLTA ) will be presenting Trudeau with the Pinnacle Award for promoting causes that make LGBTQ travelers feel safe in Canada. Trudeau also made history last year as the first Prime Minister to march in a pride parade, shaking hands with supporters, taking selfies, and otherwise enjoying the festivities of the parade. Trudeau's Pinnacle Award will be presented with the rest of the IGLTA awards May 9-12 in Toronto.

El Salvador's Ministry of Justice and Public Security, on April 16, unveiled its new LGBTI policy, The Washington Blade reported. The country's secretary of social inclusion and its director of sexual diversity and different LGBTI organizations attended the event. The initiative began in October 2016 with a roundtable on security and the LGBTI community's access to the justice system that included representatives of the Director General of Prisons, the National Civil Police, the Director General of Migration and Foreign Affairs, the National Academy of Public Security, the Inspector General of Public Security, halfway houses and groups that are part of the LGBTI Salvadoran Federation.

A Brit who describes himself as a "hot-blooded heterosexual" claims that a frequently prescribed pain medication turned him gay, according to an LGBTQ Nation item that cites The Mirror. "I noticed my libido for women had gone and I was wanting male attention," Scott Purdy, 23, said. Pregabalin—best known under the brand name Lyrica—is commonly prescribed to treat anxiety disorders, epilepsy and nerve pain; one of the side effects is loss of libido.

Thirty-one LGBTI-rights advocates from around the world attended the Human Rights Campaign's annual Global Innovative Advocacy Summit that took place in Washington, D.C., The Washington Blade reported. Danilo Manzano, an LGBTI rights advocate who lives in the Ecuadorian capital of Quito, said the summit was "the ideal opportunity to highlight the LGBTI reality" in his country. Activists from Botswana, Burundi, Ethiopia, Ghana, Nigeria, Rwanda, Zimbabwe, India, Pakistan, Philippines, Japan, Kuwait, Thailand, Albania, Czech Republic, Greece, Russia, Romania, Slovenia, Ukraine, Brazil, Dominican Republic, Colombia, Ecuador, St. Lucia, Jordan, Morocco, Turkey and Kazakhstan attended the summit.

Defiant Australian rugby player Israel Folau has penned that he's prepared to walk away from rugby if his "situation [with Rugby Australia] becomes untenable due to his Christian beliefs," according to NewNowNext.com . Folau was recently asked by an Instagram follower about God's "plan for gay people." In a since-deleted post, Folau replied, "Hell, unless they repent of their sins and turn to God." This incident isn't the first time Folau has voiced anti-gay beliefs: Ahead of a national postal survey on marriage equality in Australialast year, Folau tweeted he opposed same-sex marriage.

The Commonwealth has confirmed that Prince Charles will be the next leader of the organization of Britain and its former colonies once he succeeds his mother Queen Elizabeth II on the throne, The Washington Post reported. The announcement had been expected, since the queen said that she hoped her son and heir would lead the Commonwealth after her. The queen has led the Commonwealth throughout her 66-year reign, but the largely symbolic position is not hereditary, and some have suggested a non-royal head would project a more modern image.

Ava DuVernay, Kristen Stewart, Denis Villeneuve, Chang Chen, Robert Guédiguian, Khadja Nin, Lea Seydoux and Andrey Zvyagintsev have been named members of the 2018 Cannes Film Festival Jury, TheWrap noted. They will join Cate Blanchett, who was previously named president of the jury at France's 71st Cannes Film Festival, taking place May 8-19. This is only the third time that women have made up a majority of the jury.

Logo announced that for the third consecutive year, the network will be the exclusive U.S. broadcast home of the Eurovision Song Contest when it airs the 63rd annual Grand Final live and commercial free on both coasts on Saturday, May 12, according to a press release. Ross Mathews and Shangela will serve as Logo's commentators. The 2018 Grand Final competition and winner's ceremony will also be streamed live exclusively for U.S. viewers at LogoTV.com/eurovision-song-contest, Logo's YouTube channel at youtube.com/logoTV and the LogoTV mobile app.

Almost four decades after Margaret Thatcher rose to power as Britain's first female prime minister, the BBC has ordered a landmark documentary series on the leader, Variety noted. Thatcher—a five-hour look at the politician dubbed the "Iron Lady"—will go out on BBC Two in the U.K. The series will tell the story of how a young girl from a modest English market town, who trained as a chemist, became a world leader. Thatcher was premier from 1979 to 1990, and died in 2013.


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