News Archives

Tanzania Backs Out of Plan to Publish 'List of Gays'

Daily Nation - Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, 2/28/2017

Tanzania on Monday backed out of its plan to publish a list of names of gay people accused of selling sex online, saying this would ‘destroy evidence’. Deputy health minister Hamisi Kigwangalla had called a press conference to publicise the list, after announcing the plan earlier this month. ‘We cancelled the press conference. We are not going to announce the names of (LGBTs) who publicly market themselves for technical reasons,’ he wrote on Twitter. ‘For strategic reasons and to avoid destroying evidence we will deal with this issue differently and will keep you informed at every step.’

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UNFPA Survey: 90% of Women Have Experienced Sexual Harassment on Public Transport in Sri Lanka

Sunday Times, Sri Lanka, 2/27/2017

Findings of a nationwide study commissioned by the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) revealed that 90% of women and girls in Sri Lanka have been subjected to sexual harassment on public buses and trains. The findings also revealed that only 4% sought help from the Police. UNFPA said in a statement it had commissioned the national study in 2015, with a sample of 2,500 women and girls between the ages of 15-35 years, from all administrative districts of the nine provinces in Sri Lanka. Data was collected through stakeholder consultations, key informant interviews, and questionnaire surveys. Addressing the issue as a national priority, UNFPA in partnership with the Ministry of Women’s and Child Affairs, Ministry of Transport & Civil Aviation, the Prime Minister’s Office, and the Sri Lanka Police, launched a public advocacy campaign titled ‘Does she travel safe?’

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Bangladesh Weakens Longstanding Law against Underage Marriage

The New York Times - Dhaka, Bangladesh, 2/27/2017

Bangladesh’s Parliament softened its landmark law against underage marriage, a move that human rights activists say could roll back the country’s decades-long campaign to curtail teenage pregnancy and maternal and infant mortality. A new provision in the Child Marriage Restraint Act, which dates to 1929, allows girls under the age of 18 to marry in some circumstances. The change was met with praise from Islamist groups, which said it fell more in line with traditional religious practices. Bangladesh has one of the world’s highest rates of child marriage, but it has been gradually dropping under steady pressure from the government.

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Backpedaling on Same Sex Marriage? What Did the President Actually Say?

The China Post, Taiwan, 2/26/2017

A gay rights activist accused President Tsai Ing-wen of backpedaling on her past support for legalising gay marriage, saying she had told him recently, ‘In this life, you may probably not live to see same-sex marriage.’ Vincent Huang, who participated in a discussion with Tsai at the Presidential Office on Feb. 18, made the claim on Facebook. The Presidential Office rushed to deny his account of the event, releasing partial transcripts of last week's dialogue. According to Huang, he told the President that gay couples feared their elderly parents would not see the day when their gay and lesbian children could get married. Huang said Tsai had responded, ‘In this life, you may probably not live to see same-sex marriage.’

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Preventive Measures in HIV/AIDS

Financial Tribune, Iran, 2/26/2017

The State Welfare Organisation has so far launched 32 HIV and AIDS clubs providing support for over 4,000 individuals living with HIV. The clubs are part of the SWO drive to provide social and emotional support to patients with HIV and increase their participation in programs to prevent the AIDS epidemic. The number of clubs has increased from 23 in 2015 to 32 at present. Four more clubs are to open soon, said Majid Rezazadeh, director of HIV and AIDS prevention office at the SWO. ‘The schemes with regard to HIV prevention are centred on social behaviour and changing lifestyles so as to reduce social harm as well as sexually transmitted diseases,’ he said, IRNA reported.

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