Dallas Voice (Dallas, Tex.), Vol. 22, No. 41, Ed. 1 Friday, February 24, 2006 Page: 32 of 100
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United Arab Emirates sends 12 to
prison for roles in gay wedding
Eleven of 26 men who were arrested in
November at an alleged gay wedding in
Ghantout, United Arab Emirates, were sentenced
to six years' imprisonment on Feb. 11, media in
the tiny oil-rich nation reported.
The men were convicted under laws that ban
obscenity and homosexual activity. A 12th man
was convicted only on obscenity charges and
jailed tor one year. The 14 others were acquitted.
At the time of the arrests, a government official
had threatened that the men could also face hor-
"Because they've put society at risk, they will
be given the necessary treatment, from male hor-
mone injections to psychological therapies,"
Interior Ministry spokesman Issam Azouri said.
On Nov. 28, the State Department in
Washington denounced the arrests.
"The arrest of these individuals is part of a
string of recent group arrests of homosexuals in
the U.A.E.," the department said in a written
statement. "We call on the government of the
United Arab Emirates to immediately stop any
ordered hormone and psychological treatment
and to comply with the standards of international
Later, Colonel Mohammed Ibrahim A1 Hajiri,
of the Interior Ministry, said that Issam Azouri is
not the ministry's official spokesman and dis-
missed his remarks as irrelevant.
Czech president vetoes py partnership
bill, cites concerns about values
Czech President Vaclav Klaus vetoed a same-
sex registered-partnership bill Feb. 16, Czech
news outlets reported.
He said the bill should have been approved by
a majority of the members of the Chamber of
Deputies rather than by a majority of those who
were present for the vote. He also said gay unions
undermine traditional values.
The bill passed the Chamber of Deputies 86 to
54 on Dec. 16. Seven deputies abstained and 53
were not present. The Senate approved the meas-
ure on a 45-to-14 vote on Jan. 26. Six senators
abstained and 16 were absent.
The veto can be overridden by a vote of 101
members, a simple majority, of the Chamber of
Prime Minister Jiri Paroubek denounced the
veto, saying Klaus was "unable to overcome his
prejudices." The legislation extended to regis-
tered couples many of the rights and obligations
of marriage .A recent poll found that 62 percent of
Czechs support same-sex registered partnerships.
Scotland sees average of 3 gay
civil partnerships created per day
Scotland has seen at least three gay "wed-
dings" a day since the United Kingdom's com-
prehensive Civil Partnership Act took effect in
December, the Scotsman reported Feb. 12.
The newspaper called the demand "astonish-
ing" The largest numbers of ceremonies have
occurred in Edinburgh and Glasgow.
Gay men have tied the knot at a rate more than
double that of lesbians, the report said.
Israeli court OKs lesbian couple's
adoption of each other's children
The Ramat Gan Family Court has allowed a
same-sex couple to adopt each other's biological
children, a first for Israel, the Jerusalem Post
reported Feb. 13.
The case had been in the courts for nine years.
"It's a very good feeling," one of the kids, 15-
year-old Arel Jarus-Hakak, told the newspaper.
"We were waiting for this for a very long time
and now we are recognized as a family by the
Parents Tal and Avital Jarus-Hakak gave birth
to one child each using in-vitro fertilization. The
children were born in 1994 and 1997.
Mayor opposes Moscow pride, religious
leader calls for beatings of marchers
One of Russia's most prominent Islamic
muftis said Feb. 14 that gays should be beaten if
they stage a planned pride march in May, accord-
ing to print, broadcast and online media.
"The parade should not be allowed, and if they
still come out into the streets, then they should be
bashed," said Chief Mufti Talgat Tadzhuddin of
the Russian Muslim Central Directorate, accord-
ing to one translation. "Alternative sexuality is a
crime against God."
On Feb. 16, a spokesman for Moscow Mayor
Yury Luzhkov said the city will not allow the
parade to take place because reports about plans
for the parade have outraged society and reli-
gious leaders. He said an unauthorized parade or
rally would be "resolutely quashed."
Pride co-organizer Nikolai Alekseev, who also
runs GayRussia.ru, called the mufti's comments
"unacceptable." Coordinators vowed to take the
issue to the European Court of Human Rights.
"We have never heard yet so strong words of
hatred towards sexual minorities from influential
public figures," Alekseev said. "We will do the
legal analyses of mufti's statements and will take
a decision concerning the application to the gen-
Finland set to allow single women,
lesbians access to insemination
Finland's government has signed off on a bill
currently before Parliament that would grant sin-
gle women and lesbians unfettered access to fer-
tility treatment, the Helsingin Sanomat newspa-
per reported Feb. 11.
Minister of Justice Leena Luhtanen drafted the
measure to lift the restrictions that have impeded
The bill also grants people aged 18 and above
the right to learn the identity of their biological
mother or father in cases of sperm or egg dona-
tion, the report said.
"Most meaningful relationships
end up costing
more than this." js
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32 I dallasvoice.com I 02.24.06
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Vercher, Dennis. Dallas Voice (Dallas, Tex.), Vol. 22, No. 41, Ed. 1 Friday, February 24, 2006, newspaper, February 24, 2006; Dallas, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth238897/m1/32/: accessed November 18, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Special Collections.