World Briefs

Posted on 31 May 2007 at 5:52pm
By Rex Wockner Wockner News Service

Lithuanian Pride rally cancelled

The centerpiece of the first gay Pride celebration in Vilnius, Lithuania, was never seen.

City officials on May 23 banned a 30-meter rainbow flag carried on the European Union’s “anti-discrimination truck” and cancelled the parade.

Mayor Juozas Imbrasas banned the truck from entering the city and refused to issue a parade permit, saying it was likely to provoke anti-gay riots. It is the first time for the truck to be banned in its four-year-history of travel to 19 nations.

Warsaw Pride parade deemed success

A record 20,000 people marched through downtown under heavy police protection on May 19.

A few dozen members of a far-right youth group protested the parade, and five were arrested, police said.

Activists from around the continent joined the march, including dignitaries from Sweden, Germany and Spain.

In previous years, the parade had been banned, and gay protesters were attacked.

Korean transgender celebrity marries

South Korean transgender singer and actress Harisu married her boyfriend, rap singer Micky Chung, in Seoul on May 19.

Harisu, 32, had sexual reassignment surgery in the late 1990s and was legally recognized as female in a 2002 district court ruling. She and Chung, 27, met on the Internet in 2005.

“I’ll become a housewife who cooks well and is sexy and caring,” she said before the wedding.

The Supreme Court ruled in 2006 that postoperative people can change their gender marks.

South African churches ban marriages

Several South African churches are refusing to conduct same-sex marriages, which were legalized last year.

The Anglican and Roman Catholic Churches have bowed out nationally and Baptist, Methodist and Presbyterian churches have done so on the provincial level.

Religious institutions that don’t want to perform same-sex marriages are required to write to the Ministry of Home Affairs and explain their reasons for refusing.

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition, June 1, 2007.

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