In Uganda, regulators have prevented a gay-themed play from being shown, the Guardian reported. The River and the Mountainwhich tells the story of a young businessman coming to terms with being gay in a climate of homophobiawas slated to be performed at the National Theatre of Uganda in the country's capital, Kampala. However, the theater shut down production, although some shows took place at smaller venues.
Brazilian public notary Claudia do Nascimento Domingues has stirred controversy by granting Brazil's first civil union to a trio, according to CNN.com . In fact, the act is so unprecedented there isn't a word for it in Portuguese; however, Domingues has coined the phrase "uniao poliafetiva" ("polyfidelitous union") for the act. The trio is three professionals in their 30s: one man and two women. Regina Beatriz Tavares da Silva, head of the family law committee of a lawyers' association in Sao Paulo, said, "This union is void of any legality."
Also in Brazil, a gay man was granted four months of paid parental leavethe same amount of time that biological mothers are granted in Brazilafter he and his partner adopted a child, Advocate.com reported. Lucimar da Silva will be the first man to benefit from "maternity" leave in Brazil, two years after he and his partner, Rafael Gerhardt, took custody of their child. Typically, Brazilian fathers get only five paid days off from work when their children are born.
In South Africa, the Equality Court has fined a venue and ordered it to allow gays and lesbians on its premise after it refused to let a lesbian couple celebrate their union there, News24.com reported. The couple, Francis and Liani Buitendag, had complained that they were not allowed to publicly celebrate their civil union at Sha-Mani in Alberton last year.
In Tasmania, a measure to legalize same-sex marriage passed the first chamber of parliament, according to Pink News. The lower house passed the bill 13-11; all but one of Labour MPs voted for it, while all 10 Liberal MPs were bound by their party's policy to vote against it.
In New Zealand, Conservative Party leader Colin Craig said in a pamphlet that Prime Minister John Key is "too gay," according to Pink News. A newsletter that Craig sent claims that residents of Helensville were annoyed that Key, who's with the National Party, had offered his support for the country's marriage-equality bill without asking their opinions first. Recently, the New Zealand Marriage Amendment Bill (which would legalize same-sex marriage) passed its first reading by a vote of 80-40 in parliament.
In Britain, X Factor winner Alexandra Burke apparently disappointed thousands of fans by withdrawing from this year's Brighton Pride event, Pink News noted. Burke (who won in 2008) reportedly cancelled at the last minute because her team was not satisfied with the venue. Pride Brighton & Hove did release a statement thanking those who did perform, including Fatboy Slim and the Freemasons, among others.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel has rejected calls to give LGBT couples the same tax breaks heterosexual married couples enjoy, according to Pink News. Speaking to public broadcaster ARD, Merkel said her coalition had done much improve the legal position of same-sex couples, but she was "not sure" that should extend to equal tax status. Merkel's coalition government is divided over this issueand factions have developed over extending adoption rights to gay and lesbian couples.
Platforma Obywatelska, Poland's ruling center-right party, is planning to introduce a law of registered civil partnerships that will be include same-sex couples, Gay Star News reported. The bill includes a range of benefits currently available to only married heterosexual couples, including inheritance, pension funds, notary and medical rights. However, there is strong opposition within and outside of the party.