17 August 2017 - NPWJ News Digest on LGBTI rights


In pictures: Risky business for ‘sexugees’ in Turkey
By Politico, 17 Aug 2017

 ISTANBUL — Open any dating app in Istanbul and you will see the effects of the refugee crisis appear on your screen. For many LGBT refugees who have fled war and persecution — from former students to engineers and cleaners — the financial struggle to get by can lead them to sell sexual services online. For the gay men and trans women photographed here, sex work is often their only hope of a steady income. Many aspire to live a “normal life” but, unable to find more traditional jobs, sex work can mean the difference between renting a room or sleeping rough on the street.

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Door Opens to Achieving Marriage Equality in Czech Republic
By Human Rights Watch , 15 Aug 2017

If it was up to the thousands who participated in last week’s Prague Pride, it’s clear the Czech Republic would be joining the growing list of countries legalizing same-sex marriage. Marriage equality was a major theme during Prague Pride Week, which prominently featured a lesbian couple in wedding dresses riding in a carriage in the parade. While there was no doubt where the estimated 35,000 participants in the parade stood on the issue, public opinion still remains split with a May Czech opinion poll showing a slight majority of 52 percent in favour of same-sex marriage.

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Nigerian gay rights activist wins UK asylum claim after 13-year battle
By The Guardian, 14 Aug 2017

The Home Office has granted refugee status to a prominent Nigerian LGBT activist, ending a 13-year battle over her right to remain in the UK. Aderonke Apata, 50, says she knew she was gay from the age of 16 and was persecuted in Nigeria. In 2012 she filed an asylum claim but was considered by the Home Office to be lying about being in a lesbian relationship. Apata appealed, but was told by the judge: “What is believed is that you have presented yourself as a lesbian solely to establish a claim for international protection in an attempt to thwart your removal … It is considered that your actions are not genuine and simply a cynical way of gaining status in the UK.”

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Australia same-sex marriage vote: Why is there talk of a boycott?
By The BBC News, 12 Aug 2017

Australia is preparing for a voluntary and non-binding postal vote on legalising same-sex marriage. It will happen next month unless there is a successful court challenge.The ballot itself would not change the law, but a "yes" result could clear a path towards amending Australia's Marriage Act. But as advocates on each side begin campaigning, debate has intensified over the prospect of a boycott.

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