By Brian Bonci

May 17th marks International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia (IDAHO) and in Burma, hundreds of people attended the country’s first ever public gay pride event.

At the United Nations, senior officials today drew attention to laws around the world which discriminate against LGBT people, and called for equality and the repeal of such laws.

“When I raise these issues, some complain that I’m pushing for ‘new rights’ or ‘special rights’ for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people. But there is nothing new or special about the right to life and security of person, the right to freedom from discrimination,” said UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Navi Pillay, adding “These and other rights are universal… enshrined in international law but denied to many of our fellow human beings simply because of their sexual orientation or gender identity.”

In connection with the day, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has called on States to tackle violence against LGBT people, decriminalize consensual same-sex relationships, ban discrimination and educate the public – declaring support for the High Commissioner’s message: “We are all human and we all deserve the same rights.”
You can support Chinese LGBT Activists by standing in solidarity. Our “Comrade” tees show support for the LGBT community (“Comrade” or 同志 is slang for LGBT) and will also fund our efforts to sponsor a Chinese LGBT activist for the International AIDS Conference in Washington, D.C. this summer.
Brian Bonci is Administrative Coordinator at Asia Catalyst.

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