This No Peace Without Justice (NPWJ) news digest rounds up some of the week’s top LGBTI rights stories for the week ending 21 February:
Tajani in hot water again for World Congress of Families conference
The Parliament Magazine, 20 Feb 2019
This time, the Italian member is under fire for reportedly accepting an invitation to attend the World Congress of Families conference in Italy.
Campaigners and MEPs say the event is organised by the International Organisation for the Family (IOF), saying this is an “umbrella organisation known for its anti-LGBTI agenda.”
A letter sent by a group of MEPs from the assembly’s Intergroup on LGBTI Rights asks Tajani not to attend the event or to support it.
The letter, seen by this website, says, “Until 13 February, Antonio Tajani was listed as one of the main speakers at the World Congress of Families in Verona (29-31 March).”
“This conference, whose goal is to defend the ‘natural family as the only fundamental and sustainable unit of society’, is known for its explicit anti-women’s rights and anti-LGBTI rights positions,” it adds.
San Bernardino County to pay $1 million to LGBTQI inmates held in cells 23 hours a day, federal judge rules
The Press-Enterprise, 20 Feb 2019
San Bernardino County is to pay about $1 million to gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex inmates who were incarcerated in a so-called Alternative Lifestyle Tank at the West Valley Detention Center from 2012 to 2018, a U.S. District Court judge ruled this month.
Riverside Judge Jesus G. Bernal announced his decision six months after the American Civil Liberties Union and San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department agreed to settle a 2014 lawsuit over LGBTQI inmates being held in cells for up to 23 hours a day and prohibited from participating in jail programs.
Russian LGBTI activist at risk after reporting torture in Chechnya
Gay Star News, 15 Feb 2019
Russia must protect activists and journalists who report crimes against LGBTI people, Human Rights Watch warned on Friday (15 February). Leading Russian LGBT Network activist, Igor Kochetkov, has faced intimidation after reporting the latest anti-gay purge in Chechnya.
Authorities have arrested more than 40 people on suspicion of being LGBTI since December 2018, according to the UN. Two people have also reportedly died from torture.
At the end of January, Kochetkov filed a complaint with Russia’s Investigation Agency. He then gave the names of 14 people that authorities unlawfully detained and tortured in Chechnya’s capital, Grozny.
Government sows fear among LGBTI people in Indonesia by boasting of Instagram user ‘removal’
Amnesty International, 14 Feb 2019
Responding to Instagram’s statement that it did not remove an account featuring web comics about being gay in Indonesia, after Indonesia’s Ministry of Communication claimed that the company had done so at the government’s request, Amnesty International Indonesia’s Executive Director, Usman Hamid, said:
“By falsely boasting of Instagram’s removal of a harmless account at their demand, the government has misled the public to sow fear among LGBTI people. This is just the latest example of state-sponsored homophobia in Indonesia.