News Archives

Bogotá Launches Drive to Combat Invisible Slavery, Increase Convictions

Reuters - Bogotá, Colombia, 8/5/2017

Across the streets and squares of Colombia's capital, men and women have started appearing in large glass boxes; some look like sex workers dressed in skimpy outfits, others wear hard hats and hold shovels. The boxes featuring actors representing different forms of modern-day slavery, including forced prostitution and labour exploitation, are part of a campaign to increase public awareness of the hidden crime in Bogotá. The initiative comes amid government efforts to crack down on human trafficking in the city of 8 million, which has seen just three convictions for the crime in the past decade. An estimated 308,200 people are trapped in slavery in Colombia, according to rights group The Walk Free Foundation.

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Nepali Couple Registers ‘First Transgender Marriage’

Hindustan Times - Kathmandu, Nepal, 8/5/2017

A Nepali transgender woman and a man registered their marriage, a first in the country, the couple said on August 5, despite an absence of laws legalising same-sex or transgender unions. Monika Shahi Nath, 40, who legally identifies as a third gender, married Ramesh Nath Yogi, 22, in May and was able to register it in their home district Dadeldhura in western Nepal in July. However, a lack of legal clarity on the issue could jeopardise the marriage. Nepal’s law is silent on same-sex or transgender marriages despite a 2015 expert committee recommendation to legalise same-sex marriages following a Supreme Court order to enshrine the rights of sexual minorities.

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Delhi: Three Out of 100 Mothers 19 Years Or Below

The Times of India - New Delhi, India, 8/3/2017

According to government data, three out of every 100 women (3.10%) who delivered kids in Delhi in 2016 were 19 years and below. The percentage of women from this age group delivering kids stood at 2.75, 1.93, 2.03 and 2.21 in 2015, 2014, 2013 and 2012, respectively. Dr Alka Kriplani, professor and head of obstetrics and gynaecology division at AIIMS, said lack of education and poor knowledge about the use of contraceptive methods is the main reason behind the increase in teenage pregnancy. ‘Younger women are at a higher risk of developing anaemia and hypertension if they get pregnant. It increases the risk of mortality too,’ she said.

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Haiti Senate Votes to Ban Gay Marriage

The Indian Express - Port-au-Prince, Haiti, 8/3/2017

A vote by the Haitian Senate to ban gay marriage as well as ‘public demonstration of support’ for homosexuality reflects the will of the people, the chamber’s president has said. The Senate approved a bill that said ‘the parties, co-parties and accomplices’ of a homosexual marriage can be punished by three years in prison and a fine of about USD 8,000. Haiti’s constitution established a secular republic but the country is marked by deep religious beliefs. Only police and the judicial system can intervene in response to reported violations under the measure. The bill now goes to the Chamber of Deputies for debate, though its passage into law is all but certain.

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LGBTQ Art Fest Blurs Boundaries, Garners Ovation

The Times of India - Hyderabad, India, 8/1/2017

Boundaries blurred as Hyderabad's LGBTHQIA (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Hijra, Gender Queer, Intersex, Asexuals etc.) community celebrated diverse sexualities by busting gender stereotypes at the second edition of Queer and Allies Art Festival on July 30. A slew of LGBT artists, craftspeople and performers from different parts of the city and other states, joined hands to send out a simple message: It doesn't matter who you love or how you love, but that you love! Organised by MIST (an online collective of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender activists from all over India) the day-long event was attended by close to 200 people.

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