Archive for the ‘Trans’ Category

France: Urgent Mobilization to Avoid the Deportation of Giorgie, Ronnie, Policarpio, Three Filipinos Detained in the Strasbourg Detention Center

prison

Mobilization: Letter to Send to the French Prefecture to Avoid The Deportation of Giorgie, Ronnie, Policarpio

To contact the Prefecture:

Phone:
Accueil : 03 88 21 67 68 (demander le cabinet du préfet ou la responsable du bureau d’éloignement)
Bureau d’éloignement, Mme Marin : 03 88 21 65 13

Fax:
03 88 21 61 55 (fax du secrétaire général)
03 88 21 62 16 (fax de la préfecture)
03 88 21 68 07 (fax du sous-préfet)
03 88 75 00 47 (fax du bureau d’éloignement)
Si vous n’avez pas de fax : http://fax-gratuit.net/tt/index

Mails:
raphael.lemehaute@bas-rhin.pref.gouv.fr
pierre.ory@bas-rhin.pref.gouv.fr
infos@bas-rhin.pref.gouv.fr
secretaire-general@bas-rhin.pref.gouv.fr
secretariat-prefet@bas-rhin.pref.gouv.fr
jeanine.marin@bas-rhin.pref.gouv.fr

Suggestion of letter:

“A l’attention de Mr le Préfet,

Monsieur,

Je souhaite vous alerter concernant la situation de 3 personnes originaire des Philippines, placées actuellement en centre de rétention à Strasbourg et dont la situation est particulièrement alarmante :

  • Ronnie (APRF n°09.67.00217 du 11/05/2009)
  • Policarpio (APRF n°09.67.00216 du 11/05/2009)
  • Giorgie (prénom d’état civil : Rogelio, APRF n° n°09.67.00218 du 11/05/2009)

Ronnie et Policarpio sont homosexuels et vivent en couple depuis 1994 ; ils ont du fuir leur pays en raisons de graves menaces homophobes et vivent en France depuis 8 ans.
Giorgie, (ou Rogelio de son prénom d’état civil), est une femme transgenre; elle a du fuir les Philippines en 2005 en raison des persécutions qu’elle subissait en tant que transsexuelle, homme vers femme.
Ces trois personnes sont sous le coup d’un arrêté préfectoral de reconduite à la frontière. Les renvoyer aux Philippines les mettrait en situation de grave danger en raison des discriminations et violences homophobes et transphobes qu’elles y subissent.
Je vous demande de prendre en compte la situation de ces trois personnes et de garantir leur sécurité et le respect de leur droits humains, en les libérant et en les régularisant.

Respectueusement,

(Nom, Prénom, Organisation éventuelle, Ville)”

ALERTE ! UNE TRANS’ ET DEUX HOMOS PHILIPPIN-E-S EN DANGER D’EXPULSION À STRASBOURG !

Ronnie et Policarpio, un couple d’homos et Giorgie, une femme trans, arrêtées le 11/05/2009, actuellement au centre de rétention de Strasbourg, sont sous le coup d’un arrêté préfectoral de reconduite à la frontière et risquent une expulsion imminente.
Ces trois personnes ont du quitter les Philippines pour échapper aux persécussions homophobes et transphobes qu’elles subissaient.

UNE MOBILISATION DE TOUTE URGENCE EST NECESSAIRE !

Vous trouverez ici (et ci-dessous) le communiqué de l’ARDHIS et toutes informations nécéssaires pour agir, envoyer des courriers, en savoir plus etc…
http://lezstrasbourg.over-blog.com/

Nous avons besoin de toute urgence :

-Que les organisations LGBTI et de défense des droits humains contactent en leur nom la préfecture du Bas-Rhin pour plaider la cause de Ronnie, Policarpio et Giorgie.

-Que des courriers soient envoyés dès maintenant à la prefecture du Bas-Rhin.

-Que des actions publiques soient organisées très rapidement, en particulier à Strasbourg.

-D’informations (rapports, articles, communiqués) permettant de démontrer les risques encourus par les personnes LGBTI aux Philippinnes, afin que la Cimade puisse tenter un ultime recours.

-D’organisations signataires pour le communiqué de l’ARDHIS co-signé par Scumlambda et LeZ Strasbourgeoises.

——————————
Communiqué de l’ARDHIS (co-signé par Scumalambda et LeZ Strasbourgeoises) et infos complémentaires :

Sujet:[ardhis-infos] ALERTE: 3 Philippins homos et trans en voie d’être expulsé
Date: Tue, 19 May 2009 01:03:17 +0200
De: ARDHIS Etrangers LGBT <ardhis@hotmail.fr>

L’ARDHIS vient d’être alerté par la Cimade de la situation de 3 Philippins placés actuellement en centre de rétention à Strasbourg

Ils sont sous le coup d’un arrêté préfectoral de reconduite à la frontière et toutes les voies de recours sont épuisées. La gendarmerie procède actuellement à la demande d’un laissez-passer auprès de leur consulat pour pouvoir mettre en oeuvre l’expulsion.

Ronnie et Policarpio sont en couples depuis 1994 ; ils ont fui ensemble les menaces qu’ils avaient reçu dans leur pays et c’est en France qu’ils ont pu continuer à vivre en couple sereinement. Ils partagent un appartement et vivent de ménages chez des particuliers. Ils venaient d’entreprendre des démarches en vue d’une régularisation. Cela fait maintenant 8 ans qu’ils vivent ici !!

Giorgie, (ou Rogelio de son prénom d’état civil), a quitté les Philippines en 2005 avec un visa touriste pour la France. Mais elle fuyait en réalité les persécutions qu’elle subissait en tant que transsexuelle, homme vers femme. Elle vit à Paris et travaille comme nourrice.

Ronnie, Policarpio et Giorgie (état civil Rogelio) ont été interpelé-e-s ensemble à proximité de Strasbourg, où ils-elle étaient de passage. Ils-elle ne peuvent pas supporter même l’idée de retourner au pays.

Au lendemain même de la journée mondiale contre l’homophobie, l’Ardhis appelle les autorités à la bienveillance envers ces 3 personnes qui ne demandent qu’à vivre en harmonie dans notre pays.

L’expulsion de ces trois personnes est imminente !

NOUS APPELONS A MOBILISATION DE TOUTE URGENCE !

– écrire de toute urgence à la prefecture du Bas-Rhin pour alerter sur la situation de Ronnie (APRF n°09.67.00217 du 11/05/2009), Policarpio (APRF n°09.67.00216 du 11/05/2009) et Giorgie (pour la préfecture préciser son prénom d’état civil : Rogelio, APRF n° n°09.67.00218 du 11/05/2009) et demander leur libération et leur régularisation

– il importe que les associations LGBTI contactent très rapidement et en leur nom la préfecture du Bas-Rhin, par téléphone ou par courrier pour l’alerter sur la situation de Ronnie, Policarpio et Giorgie (préciser état civil Rogelio)

– nous appelons à la mobilisation publique des organisations et personnes LGBTI et de leurs allié-e-s, notamment à Strasbourg, pour faire valoir les droits de Ronnie, Policarpio et Giorgie.

Contacts :
ardhis@hotmail.fr
scumlambda@no-log.org

Gays Without Borders

tesekkurlerebru

Turkey: Transgender Activist Murdered

Government Should Prosecute Violence, Prohibit Discrimination

(New York, March 13, 2009) – The killing of Ebru Soykan, a prominent transgender human rights activist, on March 10, 2009, shows a continuing climate of violence based on gender identity that authorities should urgently take steps to combat, Human Rights Watch said today. News reports and members of a Turkish human rights group said that an assailant stabbed and killed Ebru, 28, in her home in the center of Istanbul.

Members of Lambda Istanbul, which works for the rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and transsexual (LGBTT) people, told Human Rights Watch that in the last month Ebru had asked the Prosecutor’s Office for protection from the man who had beaten her on several occasions and threatened to kill her. Lambda Istanbul was told that a few weeks ago police detained the man but released him two hours later. The same man is under police custody as the murder suspect.

“The Turkish police have a duty to respond to all credible threats of violence, whoever the victim,” said Juliana Cano Nieto, researcher in the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender rights program at Human Rights Watch. “Investigating violence against LGBT people, prosecuting suspects, and passing effective legislation to ensure equality are all critical to ensuring that these murderous abuses end.”

This is the second killing of a member of Lambda Istanbul in the past year. In July 2008, an unknown person shot and killed 26-year-old Ahmet Yildiz as he was leaving a café near the Bosporus. No one has been charged with this crime.

Members of Lambda Istanbul described Ebru as a leading figure in the organization, who worked to end police harassment and ill treatment of transgender people in Taksim, a central area in Istanbul. The LGBTT Platform for Human Rights, a coalition of several LGBTT organizations in Turkey, held a vigil on March 12, 2009 in front of Ebru’s home.

In 2007, Lambda Istanbul twice submitted a file of 146 cases they had documented to the Istanbul Provincial Human Rights Board, many dealing with reports of violence against transgender people, including cases of violence by the police. Several of these cases had been reported to the police. The then-deputy governor of Istanbul told Lambda Istanbul that the governor’s office had found no records of these allegations and complaints in the police districts involved.

“Until an anti-discrimination law is in place to protect the LGBT community and the police take seriously their duty to protect everyone, these murders will continue,” said Cano Nieto. “Turkey cannot continue to ignore its obligations when lives are at stake.”

The European Court of Human Rights has held that Article 2 of the European Convention on Human Rights, which protects the right to life, requires police forces to take reasonable steps to protect a person when they receive credible information that there is a risk to that person’s life.

A May 2008 Human Rights Watch report on lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) rights in Turkey, “We Need a Law for Liberation,” documents the long and continuing history of violence and abuse based on sexual orientation and gender identity there. A subsequent December 2008 report specifically documents police violence in the country and features cases of harassment and abuses against transgender people in Istanbul.

In these reports, Human Rights Watch called on Turkey to pass legislation protecting against discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity.

For more of Human Rights Watch’s work on Turkey, please visit:

http://www.hrw.org/en/europecentral-asia/turkey

For more of Human Rights Watch’s work on lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender rights, please visit:

http://www.hrw.org/en/category/topic/lgbt-rights

For more information, please contact:

In New York, Juliana Cano Nieto (English, Spanish): +1-646-407-0020 (mobile)

In Istanbul, Emma Sinclair-Webb (English, Turkish): +90-538-972- 4486 (mobile)

All informations about actions for Ebru on Kaos GL Site

ramaonu

66 countries back UN statement for LGBT human rights

London and New York – 18 December 2008

Sixty-six countries signed a joint statement in support of LGBT human rights, which was tabled at the United Nations General Assembly today (18 December 2008). The full list follows below.

The most surprising non-signers were the United States and South Africa.

The UN statement, which includes a call for the decriminalisation of homosexuality worldwide, was read by Argentina.

“This was history in the making. Totally ground-breaking. It is the first time that the UN General Assembly has been presented with a statement in support of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) human rights. Securing this statement at the UN is the result of an inspiring collective global effort by many LGBT and human rights organisations. Our collaboration, unity and solidarity have won us this success,” said Peter Tatchell of the British LGBT human rights movement, OutRage!, which lobbied for countries to support the statement.

“To decriminalise homosexuality worldwide is a battle for human rights,” added Louis-Georges Tin, the President and founder of the International Day Against Homophobia (IDAHO), which in 2006 initiated the global campaign to end the criminalisation of same-sex relationships and secured the support of dozens of international public figures, ranging from Nobel Prize winners to writers, clergy, actors, musicans and academics.

“IDAHO has worked hard for two years to promote this issue. For us, this is a great achievement. I want to thank the many other people and organisations who have worked with us since the beginning, and more recently. I also want to remind everyone that ending the criminalisation of same-sex love will be a long, hard battle. To love is not a crime”.

“IDAHO expresses its particular appreciation to the French Secretary of State for human rights, Ms Rama Yade, for her role in organising this statement and bringing it to the UN,” said Mr Tin.

Mr Tatchell added:

“The original initiative for the universal decriminalisation of homosexuality campaign came from the inspiring French black activist and gay rights campaigner, Louis-Georges Tin, coordinator of the International Day Against Homophobia (IDAHO). He lobbied the French government, which agreed to take the lead in organising the presentation of the statement at the UN.

“As well as IDAHO, I pay tribute to the contribution and lobbying of Amnesty International; ARC International; Center for Women’s Global Leadership; COC Netherlands; Global Rights; Human Rights Watch; International Committee for IDAHO (the International Day Against Homophobia); International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission (IGLHRC); International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Intersex Association (ILGA); International Service for Human Rights; Pan Africa ILGA; and Public Services International.

“The UN statement goes much further than seeking the decriminalisation of same-sex acts. It condemns all human rights violations based on sexual orientation and gender identity, urges countries to protect the human rights of LGBT people and to bring to justice those who violate these rights, and calls for human rights defenders who oppose homophobic and transphobic victimisation to be allowed to carry out their advocacy and humanitarian work unimpeded.

“Although not binding on the member states, this UN statement of principle has immense symbolic value, given the six decades in which homophobic and transphobic persecution has been ignored by the UN General Assembly.

“LGBT human rights have, however, been previously raised in other UN forums and commissions. In the 1994 decision Toonen v Australia, the UN Human Rights Committee ruled that sexual orientation is a status protected against discrimination by the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.

“Even today, not a single international human rights convention explicitly acknowledges the human rights of LGBT people. The right to physically love the person of one’s choice is nowhere directly enshrined in any global humanitarian law. No convention specifically recognises sexual rights as human rights. None offer explicit protection against discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity.

“Some international human rights instruments have, of course, been interpreted to include sexual orientation, but this is not the same as the explicit prohibitions that exist concerning discrimination based on race, nationality, gender and so on.

“Currently, 86 countries (nearly half the nations on Earth) still have a total ban on male homosexuality and a smaller number also ban sex between women. The penalties in these countries range from a few years jail to life imprisonment. In at least seven countries or regions of countries (all under Islamist jurisdiction), the sentence is death, including Saudi Arabia, Iran, Yemen, Sudan, Mauritania and parts of Nigeria and Pakistan,” said Mr Tatchell.

See the global survey of homophobia, published by the International Gay and Lesbian Association:
http://www.ilga.org/news_results.asp?LanguageID=1&FileCategoryID=9&FileID=1165&ZoneID=7
and
http://www.ilga.org/statehomophobia/ILGA_State_Sponsored_Homophobia_2008.pdf

Press contact:

Louis-Georges Tin – Paris – 00 33 6 19 45 45 52
tinluigi@aol.com

Peter Tatchell – London – 00 44 207 403 1790

Background briefing:

On May 17 2006, the International Day Against Homophobia (IDAHO), the IDAHO Committee launched a campaign « for the universal decriminalisation of homosexuality », and published a list of the first signatories, which include several Nobel Prize winners: (Desmond Tutu, Elfriede Jelinek, José Saramago, Dario Fo, Amartya Sen), entertainers (Meryl Streep, Victoria Abril, Cyndi Lauper, Elton John, David Bowie), intellectuals (Judith Butler, Noam Chomsky, Bernard-Henri Lévy), and humanitarian organisations like ILGA, Aids International and the FIDH.

On IDAHO 2008 (17 May this year) the French government announced that it would bring a LGBT human rights statement to the General Assembly of the United Nations. The text was read today in New York, and was supported by 66 countries in the world, and it clearly inscribes sexual orientation and gender identity as human rights.

The IDAHO Committee is the NGO coordinating the International Day Against Homophobia. This day is celebrated in more than 50 countries in the world, and is officially recognised by the European Union, Belgium, United Kingdom, France, Mexico, Costa-Rica, etc. These actions support international campaigns, like the call launched in 2006 “for a universal decriminalisation of homosexuality”

http://www.idahomophobia.org/

The 66 countries that signed the joint UN statement for LGBT human rights are:

Albania, Andorra, Argentina, Armenia, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Bolivia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Brazil, Bulgaria, Canada, Cape Verde, Central African Republic, Chile, Colombia, Croatia, Cuba, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Ecuador, Estonia, Finland, France, Gabon, Georgia, Germany, Greece, Guinea-Bissau, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Mauritius, Mexico, Montenegro, Nepal, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Norway, Paraguay, Poland, Portugal, Romania, San Marino, Sao Tome and Principe, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Timor-Leste, United Kingdom, Uruguay, and Venezuela.

Peter Tatchell is the Green Party parliamentary candidate for Oxford East
www.greenoxford.com/peter and www.petertatchell.net

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http://www.transgenderdor.org/

The Transgender Day of Remembrance was set aside to memorialize those who were killed due to anti-transgender hatred or prejudice. The event is held in November to honor Rita Hester, whose murder on November 28th, 1998 kicked off the “Remembering Our Dead” web project and a San Francisco candlelight vigil in 1999. Rita Hester’s murder — like most anti-transgender murder cases — has yet to be solved.

Although not every person represented during the Day of Remembrance self-identified as transgender — that is, as a transsexual, crossdresser, or otherwise gender-variant — each was a victim of violence based on bias against transgender people.

We live in times more sensitive than ever to hatred based violence, especially since the events of September 11th. Yet even now, the deaths of those based on anti-transgender hatred or prejudice are largely ignored. Over the last decade, more than one person per month has died due to transgender-based hate or prejudice, regardless of any other factors in their lives. This trend shows no sign of abating.

The Transgender Day of Remembrance serves several purposes. It raises public awareness of hate crimes against transgender people, an action that current media doesn’t perform. Day of Remembrance publicly mourns and honors the lives of our brothers and sisters who might otherwise be forgotten. Through the vigil, we express love and respect for our people in the face of national indifference and hatred. Day of Remembrance reminds non-transgender people that we are their sons, daughters, parents, friends and lovers. Day of Remembrance gives our allies a chance to step forward with us and stand in vigil, memorializing those of us who’ve died by anti-transgender violence.

Note: This page was taken from

http://www.rememberingourdead.org/day/what.html

The Remembering our Dead Web Project and The Transgender Day of Remembrance are owned by Gwendolyn Ann Smith, All Rights Reserved

Memorializing 2008

Events and Locations 2008

See also: http://lezstrasbourg.over-blog.com/article-24906286.html

tdor10

“Documentary ‘Be Like Others’ exposes Iran’s solution for homosexuals” By Therion

A disturbing documentary titled Be Like Others, exposes the twisted remedy Iran proposes for gay and lesbian people.

Filmmaker, Tanaz Eshaghian, explores the world of sex change operations – all fully funded by the state, in an effort to make homosexuals conform to Iran’s theocratic standards.

A CBC article describes the homophobic agenda that lies behind this policy:

(What the Eshaghian) film reveals is a culture so steeped in hatred of gays and lesbians that it deems a sex change preferable to simply accepting differences in sexual orientation. The shift in policy came more than two decades ago, when Ayatollah Ruholla Khomeini issued a fatwa (religious decree) declaring sex changes permissible for “diagnosed transsexuals.” Be Like Others introduces us to a number of the people who have been given this label. Some have accepted their fate, and feel the sex change to be a way to avoid further persecution; others are clearly uncomfortable with the idea, but have agreed to it simply because of intense outside pressure.

Those who undergo the procedure are often ostracized by friends and family. Most of the candidates are poor individuals who don’t have the options available to the wealthy. They believe they have no choice except to conform to the demands of the state.

Eshaghian relates that during her filming, a reporter from government controlled media showed up and proceeded to berate and criticize the young people waiting to undergo the operation. The reporter claimed they had brought their troubles with the authorities upon themselves by breaking the rules and cross-dressing before they had the operation.

Iranian authorities suffer from a bad case of myopia when it comes to even acknowledging the existence of homosexuality in their society. This would explain the bizarre statement by Ahmadinejad during his visit to the US, when he claimed that unlike the US – ‘there are no homosexuals in Iran.’

Be Like Others screens as part of Montreal’s World Film Festival which runs until September 1.

Full Article

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Nepal: Kathmandu, Third Sex Launches Election Campaign in East Nepal

Kathmandu: Sexual minorities of an eastern Nepal town, Itahari kicked off their first election rally wearing colourful dresses and playing music bands to canvass for three gay candidates.

Dipak Rai and Shrawan Chaudhari, both gay, are contesting the election under the banner of Nepal Communist Party (United) and while the third, Suryanarayan Chaudhari is contesting as an independent candidate.

The campaign jointly organized by Blue Diamond Society and Human Welfare Society with a dancing group has helped in warming up election climate in the district, a participant said.

Hundreds of demonstrators participated in the rally carrying placard with the slogan “rights to sexual minorities,” “gay freedom” and “equal status to third sex in the constitution.”

The three candidates are representing some 4,000 lesbian, gay, bi-sexual and trans-sexual communities residing in the district.

A landmark ruling of Nepal Supreme Court in favour of third sex, which includes lesbians, gays, bisexuals and intersexuals, in December last year granted them recognition and directed the government to promulgate a new act or amend the existing ones to ensure rights of the third sex.

Sunil Pant, Blue Diamond Society, an Organisation for Lesbians, Gays, Bixesuals and Transgenders in Nepal

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I have just received the following message from the association Panteras Rosa in Portugal.
For further information contact them at panteras.lisboa@gmail.com
Doug Ireland

Portugal:
Transphobia kills again: international call for action!

Two years after the brutal murder of Gisberta, in Oporto, another transsexual woman was murdered and her body placed in a rubble dumpster in the Lisbon area last month.

Other crimes followed, shocking the country. However, the surge of violence cannot hide neither the victims nor the nature of these crimes. This is the case of Luna, 42, partially deaf, of Brazilian origin, for many years resident and worker in Portugal, prostitute at Conde de Redondo area (in Lisbon).

Two years after Gisberta, transsexual people are still targets for hatred and violence based on prejudice and ignorance. The crime is under investigation and under justice secret, so we know very few about its circumstances or about its motivation; we hope the investigation undertaken by the Police can provide answers.

Nevertheless, we know that transphobia kills and that trans people are more prone to suffer violence than the majority. We know prostitution is often a job for those who have no other way of earning a living, and that it is hard
to have a gender different from the one your body suggests. We know prejudice and discrimination are pervasive, that ignorance feeds hatred and generates violence. We know the State, society, all of us, have responsibilities towards the deadly victims, and mainly towards all those other people in whose life the fight for survival coexists with fear and the risks that cause it.

Luna was born a woman although her body suggested otherwise; her body, masculine, didn’t fit her identity. She was being followed at Hospital de Santa Maria by the multidisciplinary team in charge of helping trans people change their bodies; she had projects, wishes and frustrations just like anyone else. She was dear to some people and maybe wished to go back to Brazil, where her family lives. Luna was a woman who fought against many obstacles and, according to newspapers, died victim of great violence, possibly fed by hatred, prejudice and ignorance. Her body was left in a dumpster, hidden by rubble and dust, as if it was garbage, as if her life had not been worth living.

Like all potential victims, trans people need forms of protection that guarantee equality of opportunities and the possibility of a dignified life.

Panteras Rosa Web Site

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Saudi protest over torture of gays – 7,000 lashes for ‘sodomy’ could kill
Demo at Saudi Embassy in London

London – 19 October 2007

Fifty people picketed the Saudi Arabian Embassy in London today, 19
October, in protest at the flogging and execution of gay people.

To download free use photos of the protest, click here:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/outrage/sets/72157602577245246/

On the 2 October, two young men in the Saudi Arabian city of Al-Bahah were convicted of ‘sodomy’ and sentenced to 7,000 lashes. In Saudi Arabia same-sex relations are illegal and the maximum penalty is death.

“7,000 lashes is a form of torture, calculated to cause maximum, prolonged suffering,” said protester Peter Tatchell of the gay human rights group OutRage!

“So many lashes can be fatal, depending on how many are delivered at any one time,” he said.

The London protest was organised by the National Union of Students (NUS) LGBT campaign, with the support of OutRage!

The protest came just over a week ahead of the State Visit to the UK of the Saudi tyrant, King Abdullah bin Abdul Azaz al Saud.

“As well as flogging and executing gay people, the Saudi leaders are guilty of detention without trial, torture and the public beheading women who have sex outside of marriage,” said Peter Tatchell.

“The Saudis import migrant workers to do menial tasks. They are treated like de facto slaves, frequently abused and with few rights. The media is heavily censored. Trade unions, political parties and non-Muslim religions are banned. The country is a theocratic police state.

“The British and US governments support the despotic, corrupt Saudi regime. Labour sells the Saudi leaders arms and honours them with state visits. It refuses asylum to gay Saudis who flee persecution and seek refuge in the UK,” he said.

“The Saudi leaders should be shunned until they stop their homophobic persecution and their many other human rights abuses,” said fellow OutRage! protester, Brett Lock.

“Next week’s State Visit by King Abdullah should be cancelled. Gordon Brown and The Queen should not be welcoming to Britain the head of a corrupt, tyrannical regime.

“We urge international solidarity to support the Saudi people’s struggle for democracy and human rights, in the same way that the world mobilised to support the struggle against apartheid in South Africa,” said Mr Lock.

This view was echoed by NUS protest organiser, Scott Cuthbertson:
“We call on individuals and groups, LGBT or otherwise, to protest against the continued criminalisation, imprisonment, torture and murder of LGBT people in Saudi Arabia,” he said.

“We handed in a letter of protest to the Saudi Ambassador, HRH Prince Mohammed bin Nawaf, calling on his Government to respect the human rights of its own LGBT citizens. Please join us in the struggle for Love without Borders – LGBT rights around the world – and make your views known to the Saudi Ambassador,” he added.

“This year NUS LGBT Campaign is campaigning for ‘Love without Borders'”, said Claire Anderson, the NUS LGBT Officer and co-organiser of the protest.

“Around the world, LGBT people are persecuted, imprisoned and even murdered in state-sponsored homophobia. We live in a global community and no longer can we stand by while LGBT people are persecuted. Now is the time to use our freedom to fight for the rights of others across the globe. When abuses of human rights take place we must not be silent,” she said.

Contact phone number:
Claire Anderson NUS 07845 605152
Peter Tatchell OutRage! 020 7403 1790
Read also: Saudi Arabia: 7,000 Lashes for Sodomy

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Lack of funds may force group to return imperiled gay Iraqis to the streets
Julie Weisberg
Published: Tuesday October 16, 2007, Raw Story

Since the US invasion of Iraq, gays and transgendered people have suffered intense persecution. This targeted violence has been documented and acknowledged in recent State Department and United Nations reports.

Violence against gays has intensified sharply since late 2005, when Iraq’s leading Shiite Muslim cleric, Grand Ayatollah Ali Sistani, issued a fatwa, or religious decree, which declared that gays and lesbians should be “killed in the worst, most severe way,” Ali Hili said.

Since then, LGBT people have been specifically targeted by the Madhi Army, the militia of fundamentalist Shia cleric Muqtada al-Sadr, as well as other Shia militant death squads. The Badr Organization, the military arm of the Supreme Council for Islamic Revolution in Iraq and one of the leading political forces in Baghdad’s ruling coalition, has been particularly active.

Several months ago, two lesbians working with Iraqi LGBT were assassinated in the safe house they were running in Najaf, along with a young boy the women had rescued from the local sex industry.

“These people have given their lives,” Peter Tatchel of British gay rights group Outrage! said of Iraqi LGBT’s work during a phone interview last week. “And the group’s members inside Iraq have managed to save lives.”

Hili said that in addition to the raid on Iraqi LGBTs headquarters last year, there are other credible reports of gay men being arrested and executed by the Iraqi police.

Although British and Canadian news organizations have reported on the persecution of Iraqi gays, the issue has largely been ignored by mainstream US media.

Veteran investigative journalist Doug Ireland was the first to break the story for an American publication, GayCityNews, last year. Ireland has continued to file reports on the increasingly precarious situation for Iraq’s gays.
“Every LGBT person is in danger”

The chaotic situation in Iraq makes it impossible to document precisely how many gay, transgender and lesbian individuals have been killed as a result of their sexuality or gender expression. But Hili said his group has specific knowledge of hundreds of cases of homophobic persecutions. Every LGBT person in Iraq is in danger, he said…

Read the full article on Raw Story
Friends of Iraqi LGBT
See also: Al-Mahdi Army / Active Religious Seminary / Al-Sadr’s Group
IRAQI LGBT: SAFE HOUSE CAMPAIGN