Iceland Hub

Europe's Top Human Rights Court Waives Sterilization Requirement in Turkish Trans Man’s Gender Reassignment

Screen Shot 2015-03-10 at 5.29.51 PM

The European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) ruled against the government of Turkey on Tuesday in favor of a trans man who was denied the right to gender reassignment surgery unless he agreed to undergo sterilization reports Buzzfeed:


The case began in 2005, when a Turkish court ruled that a trans man identified in court documents as Y.Y. could not undergo gender reassignment surgery because he was not infertile, a requirement for gender reassignment under Turkish law. He went to court rather than submit to medical sterilization. A Turkish court ultimately allowed him to move forward with gender reassignment in 2013, but the ECHR still heard his original challenge and awarded him damages of 7,500 euros in damages for the years he was unable to access gender reassignment surgery.

“The respect due to the physical integrity of the concerned party would be in opposition to his having to undergo” sterilization, the court ruled in a unanimous decision, and therefore a violation of the European Convention on Human Rights, the treaty on which the ECHR’s authority is based. “The resulting interference in the claimant’s rights with respect to his private life cannot thus be said to have been ‘necessary’ in a democratic society.”

However, the ruling only addresses sterilization requirements, and it does not address other barriers impeding trans people from gender reassignment surgery such as having psychiatric professionals sign off on requests. 

Reykjavik Mayor Wants to Cut City's Ties with Moscow Over Russian Capital's Stance on Gay Rights

Moscow and Reykjavik, Iceland are "sister cities", and Reykjavik Mayor Jon Gnarr wants to end that relationship over Moscow's anti-gay laws, The Reykjavik Grapevine reports:

GnarrThe proposal was put forth during a City Council meeting yesterday, Vísir reports. Should the proposal pass it would effectively terminate all political and cultural relations between Reykjavík and Moscow.

“In light of the developments that have taken place in recent years in matters of gay, bisexual, and transgender people in Russia, the Human Rights Office and the Mayor’s Office have entrusted the deputy mayor to propose amendments to the existing agreement between the two cities or terminate it all together following consultation with the Foreign Ministry,” read the minutes from the City Council meeting.

In 2007 Reykjavík and Moscow became sister cities, an agreement that would see the municipalities exchanging information, and cooperate on policies regarding youth and family.

The severing of the relationship will require oversight from the Foreign Ministry, they report.

You may recall that in 2010 Gnarr donned a dress, wig, and make-up to ride in the city's Gay Pride parade, and joined a protest agains the imprisonment of three Pussy Riot rockers in Russia.

News: Jóhanna Sigurðardóttir, GOP, James Franco, FAA

6a00d8341c730253ef014e86b06427970d Listen: Beyonce and Andre 3000's version of Amy Winehouse's track "Back to Black."

Johanna6a00d8341c730253ef014e86b06427970d Iceland's Jóhanna Sigurðardóttir, the first openly gay prime minister in the entire world, steps down from her post today.

6a00d8341c730253ef014e86b06427970d Coldplay's Chris Martin's shirtless day in the park.

6a00d8341c730253ef014e86b06427970d The Church of England's seemingly pro-gay request: "The Diocese of Manchester has instructed the official panel appointing its new bishop to select someone who can establish “positive relationships” with gay Anglicans and non-worshippers."

6a00d8341c730253ef014e86b06427970d GOP organization funding marriage equality lobbying efforts: "The group has spent $500,000 on lobbying since last month, including efforts in Rhode Island, Delaware, Indiana, West Virginia and Utah."

6a00d8341c730253ef014e86b06427970d Two and a Half Men is coming back next year but without the half part.

6a00d8341c730253ef014e86b06427970d Pussy Riot member Nadezhda Tolokonnikova denied parole.

Franco6a00d8341c730253ef014e86b06427970d Miami Gay & Lesbian Film Festival awards James Franco with Ally Award today: "His multi-faceted talents coupled with his contributions to LGBT film both in front of the camera and behind the scenes have helped shine the spotlight on LGBT cinema and a filmmaker's right to free expression."

6a00d8341c730253ef014e86b06427970d Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer had to undergo shoulder surgery yesterday following a bicycle accident.

6a00d8341c730253ef014e86b06427970d McDonald's might make breakfast an all day option.

6a00d8341c730253ef014e86b06427970d The White House Correspondents' Dinner takes place in DC tonight - hosted by Conan O'Brien.

6a00d8341c730253ef014e86b06427970d Relief is in sight - those recent lengthy flight delays caused by sequester-related furloughs will come to an end by tomorrow: "The FAA issued a statement Saturday, saying that it had suspended all employee furloughs and that 'the system will resume normal operations by Sunday evening.'"


Band Knows Straight Love And Gay Love Are One And The Same: VIDEO


The music video for Icelandic band Dikta's latest track, "What Are You Waiting For?" revolves around a couple tested by one of the partners' racing career. When they were casting, however, the band realized that the narrative remained unchanged if the couple in question were both men, so that's what they did.

An explanation, via Reddit:

During the writing process we decided to change the couple from traditional hetero to being two gay men, feeling as it wouldn't change the narrative of the story, that in the society today it shouldn't matter if the couple was gay or straight.

In a way we felt we were taking a stand in 'normalizing' LBGT but due to the graphic and violent content of the video when we also feared we'd be misinterpreted as being gay bashing.

After several edits and subsequent screenings we feel that the finished video comes out as we hoped; on it's own it's not a "pro" or "against" statement but takes the kind of 80s action hero "fight for love" theme/cliché and opens it up to the fact that there's no such thing as a standard couple. All this by simply changing the couple from being hetero to gay.

Watch the video AFTER THE JUMP, but be warned the level of violence is both disturbing and potentially not so work friendly.

Continue reading "Band Knows Straight Love And Gay Love Are One And The Same: VIDEO" »

Patti Smith And Russell Crowe, Blowing Minds In Reykjavik: VIDEO


Russell Crowe's a busy dude. He's in Iceland at the movement to shoot a film called Noah, but yesterday he took a break from his on-camera work to perform not one, not two, but three brief rock'n'roll concerts around Reykjavik, perhaps in celebration of Reykjavik's annual "culture night."

He was joined onstage by his friend, the musician and actor Alan Doyle, and during his latter two appearances Patti Smith made a cameo, driving the crowds into a totally justifiable frenzy. AFTER THE JUMP, see Smith join Russell and Doyle in the intimate bar at the KEX Hostel, performing "Because The Night." Patti's godlike.

Continue reading "Patti Smith And Russell Crowe, Blowing Minds In Reykjavik: VIDEO" »

Reykjavik Mayor Jon Gnarr Dons Pink Dress, Rides in Gay Pride Parade to Support Punk Band Pussy Riot: VIDEO


Now here's a progressive mayor:

Reykjavik Mayor Jon Gnarr rode through the streets of the Icelandic capital in a bright pink dress and matching balaclava to add his voice to calls to free three Pussy Riot rockers facing seven years in a Russian jail for an anti-government performance...

...Gnarr, formerly an actor and comedian, made the gesture Saturday during Rekyavik's yearly gay-pride festival, which ran Aug. 7 to 12.

The Reykjavik mayor's colorful protest came the same day as Icelandic musician Bjork published a statement expressing sympathy for Pussy Riot on her site, saying she understood the defendants "as a musician and a mother."


Continue reading "Reykjavik Mayor Jon Gnarr Dons Pink Dress, Rides in Gay Pride Parade to Support Punk Band Pussy Riot: VIDEO" »


Towleroad - Blogged