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Oct 06 2014 User Rating:  / 0

LABOUR'S LGBT rights envoy Michael Cashman who is also a patron of the gay British chariity, The Pink Triangle Trusthas condemned the imprisonment in Morocco of a British man for "homosexual acts".

Ray Cole, 69, a retired magazine publisher from Deal in Kent, was arrested last month, during a holiday to Marrakesh to visit a Moroccan man, Jamal Jam Wald Nass.

On Thursday he was found guilty of ‘homosexual acts’ and sentenced to four months behind bars, alongside Mr Jam Wald Nass.

Lord Cashman, who was appointed by Ed Miliband as his LGBT rights envoy two weeks ago, told PinkNews:

This man should be released immediately. If not, then the Morocaans must face the economic and diplomatic consequences that will follow.
What is clear is what I’ve always argued – the rights we enjoy in the United Kingdom are not the same rights when we travel abroad.

That’s why it’s vital that the UK leads in the European Union, so that where we have trade agreements and association agreements they are based on upholding the rights that we have in common with the EU, and that includes non-discrimination on the grounds of being lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender.

As Labour’s newly-appointed LGBT global envoy, this is part of the work that I will be undertaking with colleague within the UK and within the EU and the Commonwealth, to try to achieve a common set of principles that are based n fundamental human rights.

Mr Cole’s son Adrian said previously:

The trial was a complete farce, it was just farcical. They’ve gone through his phone and found photographs that they’re using as evidence for a homosexual act.

He’s had a couple of minor strokes before and has a minor heart condition. He has also been suffering with depression, which the court didn’t take into account.

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office said:

We can confirm the detention of a British national in Morocco. We are providing consular assistance.

 Update (October 7,2014): The BBC today reported that Ray Cole has been released,

Aug 11 2014 User Rating:  / 0

 

MICHAEL Cashman – a patron of the UK's Pink Triangle Trust, former Labour MEP and one-time British soap actor – has been made a Lord.

Cashman was one of a number of working peers appointed last week, and will add to the House of Lord's current membership of 770.

Having served as a Labour MEP for 15 years, the 63-year-old officially stepped down at this year's European Parliament election, having served his Midlands European constituency from 1999 till 2014.

Cashman said his appointment to the Lords was an "honour" and that he realised it was an "enormous responsibility," too.

It's a huge and humbling honour. I just wish my old Mum and Dad were alive to witness it. I will take this enormous responsibility with me in everything that I do.

He added:

It's a huge opportunity to speak out about the things that I'm passionate about: equality, human rights, inhumanity, and international development.

Michael Cashman has, for many years campaigned on the issue of gay rights and, in 1989, together with Sir Ian McKellen and a number of others, helped set up Stonewall, a national UK gay-rights organisation.

Today, he is a patron of the UK's only gay humanist charity, the Pink Triangle Trust (PTT), which was set up in 1992. The trust publishes the quarterly Pink Humanist magazine.

 

Aug 01 2014 User Rating:  / 0

 

UGANDA'S Constitutional Court has annulled tough anti-gay legislation signed into law in February by President Museveni (pictured above).

It ruled that the bill was passed by MPs in December without the requisite quorum and was therefore illegal.

Homosexual acts were already illegal, but the new law allowed for life imprisonment for "aggravated homosexuality" and banned the "promotion of homosexuality".

Several donors have cut aid to Uganda since the law was adopted.

Uganda is a deeply conservative society where many people oppose gay rights and the sentence for homosexual acts has always been life imprisonment.

Earlier drafts of the anti-homosexuality act made it a crime not to report gay people – which would have made it impossible to live as openly gay – but this clause was removed.

However the legislation that was passed in parliament was "null and void", the presiding judge at the Constitutional Court said, as not enough lawmakers had been present to vote on the bill.

 

Jul 17 2014 User Rating:  / 0

 

FORMER Labour MEP Michael Cashman and Pink Triangle Trust patron has slammed the appointment of Nicky Morgan as Minister for Women and Equalities and Education Secretary, saying it is “deeply worrying”.

On Tuesday, David Cameron appointed Nicky Morgan as the new Education Secretary and Minister for Women and Equalities.

She is now responsible for schools and the government’s overall strategy on equality. The MP voted against same-sex marriage last year.

Stonewall founder Cashman, who retired as an MEP earlier this month, tweeted to question the appointment:

Nicky Morgan in charge of education and equalities is deeply worrying. The true nature of the Tory party is unchanged and reverting to type.

Downing Street has defended the appointment of Mrs Morgan, saying as she is also the Education Secretary, she will be responsible for tackling issues such as homophobic bullying in schools.

Many have questioned her appointment, however, as Mrs Morgan, elected to Parliament in 2010, voted against the Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Act at second and third reading last year, stating that “marriage is between a man and a woman.”

 The gay Humanist charity the Pink Triangle Trust said shares its patron's concern.

Morgan is clearly a committed Christian with Bible-based views on homosexuality. She has described her role in Parliament as not only to serve her constituents, but 'to remember the Word of God and serve the Lord'.

Jun 30 2014 User Rating:  / 0

 

THE latest issue of The Pink Humanist (above) carries a piece on page 2, asking why no action has been taken by the Charity Commission against Cambridgeshire evangelist Paul Shinners, who travelled to Uganda in 2012 to urge local politicians and church leaders to support anti-gay legislation.

When news of his visit first broke, Shinners, who heads the Passion for Souls charity, vehemently denied commending Ugandan politicians for the proposed legislation, which, at that time, included a death penalty clause.

Responding to pieces published by Pink Humanist and Freethinker editor Barry Duke in Spain, Human Rights Commissioner Melanie Nathan in San Francisco and Daniel Law in the UK, he immediately played the victim card, saying that his presence in Uganda at a religious rally organised by David Kiganda, was:

Simply to preach the Good News of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, which I did.

This was in direct conflict with a report carried by the Daily Monitor, under this headline:

Part of the report quoted Bishop Kiganda, the leader of Christianity Focus Ministries (CFM) and the overseer of Bornagain Churches as saying:

We ask Members of Parliament to stop wasting time debating the Bill but simply pass it to save school-going children, who are at risk of being recruited. Our leaders should desist from any act that would frustrate this proposed law because it has delayed.

Kiganda added that the “vice” [homosexuality] threatened the morality of the people.

The Monitor continued:

The remarks by pastors came amidst controversies and media reports of increasing promotion of homosexuality. Rev. Paul Schinners (sic) from the United Kingdom commended Uganda for the Bill, saying it was a clear stand for God.

There is no other nation world over that has such a plan and through this, Uganda is going to be blessed.

According to Daniel Law, all of Kiganda’s rallies are captured on video and flogged to those stupid enough to buy this bilge.

But not this one!

Said Law on his blog last week:

He [Shinners] made many efforts to eradicate all evidence of what he said in Uganda. All of David Kiganda’s events are recorded and available to be purchased with the exception of the event Paul Shinners spoke at. He had successfully had the recording removed from most data sources in Uganda for ‘security reasons’.

But Law, to his credit, kept digging. And finally unearthed a clip from the 7th National Day of Prayer that Shinners attended, and it clearly shows the accuracy of the Monitor report.

Law would like to acquire the whole video, which runs for a mind-numbingly three hours and 45 minutes, but the asking price is £130 (he paid £30 for the clip which you can watch here.

This offers incontrovertible proof that Shinners has lied throughout the affair, and that he was not the victim, as he claims, of a “defamatory” campaign.

Before the video was unearthed a Christian blog said:

Despite a lack of evidence to support allegations of homophobia made against Paul Shinners of Cornerstone, St Neots, bloggers in the UK, Spain and the USA have continued with their campaign against him, leading to further business disruptions.

Instead of apologising, the bloggers see their campaign as justified and have continued to post increasingly aggressive demands for explanations along with accusations of lying and, most recently, supposed “proof” in support of their allegations.

Rather than allow himself to be goaded or drawn further into what appears to be an ever more acrimonious campaign, however, Paul has responded with a simple, ‘God bless you’, a response that has been greeted with open contempt by the bloggers.

The blog vanished soon after the clip was published.

Read more of this story here and here.

 

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The Pink Humanist

The Pink Humanist is a 16-page quarterly magazine launched by the PINK TRIANGLE TRUST  in 2011 and edited by veteran gay journalist and photographer, Barry Duke, who lives in Benidorm on Spain's Costa Blanca.

The Pink Triangle Trust was established as a UK registered charity in 1992 – and is the only charity of its kind in the UK.

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