International News

Colombians stage kiss-a-thon in support of LGBT rights


Dozens of same-sex couples kissed simultaneously outside an upscale shopping mall in Colombia’s capital, in the latest demonstration calling for LGBT rights in the South American country.

The “kiss-a-thon” was held just days after two gay men in their early 20s were harassed at the Andino Shopping Mall in Bogotá.

The incident was caught on video by bystanders and shared widely on social media, sparking a wave of support for the young gay couple.

On April 17, hundreds of activists waving rainbow flags gathered around one of the mall’s entrances and shouted chants in support of gay rights.


Court lifts ban on LGBT Pride events in Turkey’s capital city


Kaos GL, a Turkish LGBTI rights group, on April 20, successfully appealed a ban on Pride events in the capital city of Ankara at the 12th administrative court on. The court lifted the ban.

LGBTI rights supporters had attempted to appeal the ban in November 2018, which was ultimately rejected.

The ban had been in effect since November 2017. It had been introduced under emergency powers brought following an attempted coup against the Turkish government in 2016.

The governor’s office had initially justified the move on the grounds that LGBTI Pride events could “provoke reactions within certain segments,” such as counter-protests from far-right groups. 

In recent years, LGBTI rights advocates have expressed alarm at what they perceive to be increasing authoritarianism and homophobia by the authorities. News of the ban being lifted was a welcomed by LGBTI allies and supporters


Kenya’s lesbian pastor says LGBTQ people are ‘children of God’


Jacinta Nzilani, who came out as a lesbian in February, said in an interview with Kenya’s Tuko TV when she was asked about Biblical passages condemning homosexuality that LGBTQ people are “children of God.”

The evangelist who preaches in Nairobi replied: “God didn’t give us freedom which is limited, it is unlimited. I am free to choose what I want. The way they [LGBT+ people] relate — the way they associate and express themselves — should not be agenda for others to block them, criminalize them and let them be cocooned somewhere. They are people of God, children of God and God has given us all things in equity. If it is life, it is equal to everybody. If it is salvation, he gave it to us all.”

In the interview, the lesbian pastor spoke about her long journey towards coming out in Kenya, a country that still has an oppressive regime against LGBT+ people.

She explained that she was married to a man for many years, and that she came to realize through “all the struggle in the marriage” that she “loves women.” n


— compiled by Larry Nichols