poetics, time, body disruption and marginally queer solutions

Saturday, October 21, 2006

Vietnamese censors OK first transsexual singer's musical debut

Hanoi- Communist Vietnam's conservative Ministry of Culture has approved release of the debut music CD by the country's first transsexual singing star, an official said Friday. Cindy Thai Tai's release Sentiments features a selection of Vietnamese standards, including such love songs as Sweet Pain. 

Reached by telephone Friday, the singer said the news was doubly welcome as she was celebrating Vietnamese National Women's Day.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Dutch grant special asylum rights to gay Iranians

AMSTERDAM (Reuters) - The Dutch government has granted special asylum rights to Iranian homosexuals, despite earlier comments by Immigration Minister Rita Verdonk who said they were safe so long as they were discrete.

Verdonk, whose tough stance on immigration and asylum has been condemned by many on the left, based her decision on an unpublished report by Human Rights Watch, which refers to systematic abuse of homosexuals in Iran, her ministry said in a statement on Wednesday.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Lithuania sued over transsexual

The 28-year-old man, identified only as Mr L, was born and registered as female, but since 1998 has undergone hormone treatment and breast removal.

His doctors say they will complete the operation only when legal conditions are established.

The case at the European Court of Human Rights claims his rights
were violated.

His lawyers said his rights had been breached on several grounds, including respect for private life, the right to marry, discrimination and the prohibition of degrading treatment.


Congressman's spouse can't have pension

When same-sex marriage became legal in Massachusetts, among those who tied the knot were former Rep. Gerry Studds and Dean Hara.
But getting married didn't protect them under federal law: Hara has learned he is not eligible for any portion of Studds' estimated annual $114,337 pension following his partner's death last week.


Gay rights concern for Nepal talks

Gay rights in Nepal may become isolated as talks between the Seven Party Alliance (SPA – government) and the Maoists in Nepal continue, a local LGBT group has warned.

The Blue Diamond Society has expressed concern that gay rights will be forgotten while the country discusses more controversial issues of the future of the monarchy and arms management. 

The interim constitution has not been endorsed and the date for constitutional assembly has also been lingering with the dispute between the SPA and Maoists. 


'Same-sex bill will make it harder for gays'

The South African Human Rights Commission (HRC) on Monday slammed the Civil Union Bill as unconstitutional, saying it would contribute towards the discrimination and stigmatisation of gays and lesbians.

Instead, the HRC proposed that the Marriage Act should be amended to allow for all persons, whether heterosexual, homosexual or those of intersex status, to marry.

The submission was made during public hearings on the Civil Union Bill in parliament and flows from a 2005 Constitutional Court ruling which gave parliament until December 1 this year to have a law recognising same-sex marriages.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Hong Kong drops challenge against gay sex law

Hong Kong's government on Monday caved in to a challenge against its gay sex laws, effectively lowering the homosexual age of consent from 21 to 16.

The decision followed a shaming government defeat in the courts when it vainly appealed against a judicial review's findings that the law governing the age of gay consent was unconstitutional.

In a short statement, the Security Bureau said it would not seek to reverse the court's decision.