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  EN LA VIDA

World News
by REX WOCKNER
2003-09-01

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CIVIL UNIONS BEGIN IN BUENOS AIRES

Latin America's first civil-union ceremony took place July 18 in Buenos Aires, Argentina.

Activists Cesar Cigliutti and Marcelo Suntheim got hitched at the Civil State Registry office under the city's new Public Registry of Civil Unions law.

Registered couples receive spousal rights in areas such as insurance, health care, hospital visitation and bank loans.

Outside the office, gays celebrated with firecrackers, confetti and cider.

'I am overcome with emotion,' Cigliutti said. 'This law frees gay men and women to be citizens.'

Activists with the Comunidad Homosexual Argentina organization are continuing their push for a national civil-union law.

PROTECTIONS REJECTED IN GUYANA

The National Assembly of the small South American nation of Guyana mothballed a bill to ban anti-gay discrimination July 24.

The measure was sent to a constitutional-review committee for discussion and public testimony.

During debate on the matter, 200 Christians sang hymns outside the Assembly building. Religious denominations opposed the measure with the exception of the Roman Catholic Church which supported it.

A similar bill passed the Assembly two years ago but was vetoed by President Bharrat Jagdeo.

Guyana is 60 percent Christian and 30 percent Hindu.

MEXICANS TO START GLAAD-LIKE GROUP

Activists in Mexico City are beginning the process of setting up a media-monitoring group like the U.S.' Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation.

It likely will be named Red Nacional (National Network).

GLAAD's People of Color Media Director, Mónica Taher, will go to Mexico City in October to conduct media training and provide support for the new organization.

BRAZILIANS STAGE KISS-IN

More than 1,000 gays staged a kiss-in at the Frei Caneca shopping center in São Paulo, Brazil, Aug. 3 in protest against a security guard who had forced a same-sex couple to stop kissing.

Mall management supported the event, staged in the food court, by blanketing the premises with posters of red lipstick kisses.

However, a mall spokesman said the original kissing incident had crossed a line by being excessively intimate and the guard made the right call.

FIJIAN ALLEGED

KILLER WAS 'INSANE'

The man charged with hacking to death the openly gay head of the Fijian Red Cross and his lover was found innocent of the crimes Aug. 6 by reason of insanity.

Apate Kaisau, 29, will be held indefinitely in a Suva mental hospital, according to the Australian daily newspaper The Age.

Kaisau was charged with murdering John Scott, 53, and his partner, Gregory Scrivener, 39, in July of 2001.

ANGLICANS TO STAGE UNUSUAL POW-WOW

The head of the Anglican Communion, Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams, has called an unprecedented special meeting of the communion's 38 primates following the Aug. 6 decision by U.S. Episcopalians to install an openly gay and sexually active bishop in the diocese of New Hampshire.

Williams and others fear the highly controversial election of Bishop Gene Robinson will cause the Anglican Communion to break in two.

'The anxieties caused by recent developments have reached the point where we will need to sit down and discuss their consequences,' Williams said.

The meeting is scheduled for mid-October.


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