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Gay Couple in Myanmar Makes History with First Public Gay Wedding Ceremony: VIDEO

Myanmar

A gay couple in Myanmar, where homosexuality is illegal, took a bold step in that conservative nation and held a public wedding ceremony, AFP reports:

Tin Ko Ko and Myo Min Htet exchanged rings in an upmarket Yangon hotel Sunday, in the latest sign of changing social mores in the Southeast Asian nation as it emerges from the shadow of military dictatorship.

The marriage does not enjoy any legal status but followed the customs of other Myanmar weddings, with the two men arriving in solemn procession followed by six groomsmen in front of some two hundred guests.

"My family accepted me. I am so glad that my parents were understanding... but he had to overcome many difficulties from his family," said Tin Ko Ko, 38, of his partner in an emotional speech.

The couple has been together for 10 years. The laws against homosexuality are not strictly enforced.

Watch video of the couple's wedding, AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "Gay Couple in Myanmar Makes History with First Public Gay Wedding Ceremony: VIDEO" »


Quiet Gay Pride In Myanmar

MyanmarLGBT people in Myanmar and their allies held a series of events across the country last night to for the first time celebrate gay pride, including a concert and discussion attended by about 400 people in Yangon (also called Rangoon).

Though Myanmar, also called Burma, has become more liberal since the military regime's fall, same-sex relationships are still a crime, the BBC reports, which means most LGBT people weren't comfortable holding a full-blown gay pride parade.

Burma is a conservative, mainly Buddhist country where many gay men and women feel they cannot come out.

As such organisers decided against hosting a street parade, which is a traditional feature of gay pride events around the world.

Instead, around 400 people attended an evening of music and talks held in the ballroom of a hotel in Rangoon.
...
"In the past we didn't dare do this. We've been preparing to hold this event for a long time… and today, finally it happened," gay make-up artist Min-Min told the AFP news agency.

The event was timed to coincide with today's International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia.


Era of Fear Eases as Aung San Suu Kyi, NLD Party Win Seats in Burma Parliament: VIDEO

Burma

Thousands celebrated in Burma (Myanmar) after elections results revealed that longtime imprisoned opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi and her party won seats in parliament.

The Guardian reports: Suukyi

Aung San Suu Kyi has hailed "the beginning of a new era" in Burma's politics after her party claimed a spectacular 43 out of 44 parliamentary seats in Sunday's historic byelection.

Speaking to thousands of red-clad supporters outside the headquarters of her opposition party, the National League for Democracy' (NLD), the Nobel laureate called the election "a triumph of the people" and said: "We hope this will be the beginning of a new era."

Traffic slowed to a crawl as throngs of people, many of them waving flags and clutching red and white roses, spilled into the street to cheer, clap and call out "Amay Suu" (Mother Suu) as her motorcade arrived. At least one person was trampled underfoot when bodyguards pushed back the crowds and people swarmed to the car to see the woman who spent almost 22 years under house arrest and who many hope will create a new future for Burma's 60 million people.

CNN reports:

The sudden relaxation of political shackles on the Nobel laureate has raised the inevitable questions of why, and what do they want in return? One expert said Myanmar's new leaders, who were elected to power in a vote derided as a "sham" in November 2010, had tired of being ostracized by the international community.

Watch an Australian news report from the scene, AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "Era of Fear Eases as Aung San Suu Kyi, NLD Party Win Seats in Burma Parliament: VIDEO" »


News: Apple, Kellan Lutz, Myanmar, The Netherlands, Andy Cohen

 road Apple employees' "It Gets Better" video disappears and then reappears on Youtube.

Kellanlutz  road A shirtless Kellan Lutz just might be the best thing about the upcoming movie Love Marriage Wedding.

 road Ben Cohen on his icon status in the gay community: I don't really see myself as a gay icon but I realize I have this huge following and it's growing every day."

 road Katy Perry hits up Coachella.

 road Gays in Myanmar seek Thai-like acceptance: "'It's not like Iran where they are killed, but gays are a strange story in this country.' Traditionally, the only area where non-heterosexuality has been openly embraced is the realm of "nat" or spirit worship, a form of animism that is intertwined with Myanmar's Buddhist beliefs."

 road The rich keep getting richer.

 road Donald Trump tells Albany radio station: "I have a great relationship with the blacks. I've always had a great relationship with the blacks."

Andy  road Andy Cohen was Grand Marshal at this year’s Miami Beach Gay pride parade.

 road Ten years after the introduction of marriage equality to the Netherlands: "A decade later, of the nearly 75,000 civil marriages that take place in the Netherlands each year, about 1,400 involve same-sex couples. Heterosexual couples did not turn away from the institution of marriage, nor did the world isolate my country. Civilization as we know it did not end. And, as far as I can tell, God did not punish the Netherlands."

 road Update on the controversy surrounding sheriff in Illinois who made "fag Jew boy" comment on Facebook: "The Schuyler County Board voted unanimously to mandate diversity training for all County department heads, employees and all members of the board."

 road Conservative politician and Queensland LNP leader Campbell Newman on marriage equality: "My personal views on [gay marriage] are I am for it but I don’t see myself changing the law, I won’t be pushing for that."

 road Fans boo Cee Lo for showing up late to a show at Coachella.


Towleroad Guide to the Tube #780

AUNG SAN SUU KYI: The pro-Democracy activist is released after seven years in detention in Myanmar.

EEL: Bird has a happy meal.

HOT FOR TEACHER: A scene based on Frank Anthony Polito's book Band Fags.

CHERYL COLE: May have let one rip on X Factor.

For recent Guides to the Tube, click HERE.


Scientists Discover New Snub-Nosed Monkey Species in Myanmar

Monkey

Scientists surveying an area of Myanmar have discovered a new species of monkey:

"Scientists surveying in the area initially identified the so-called snub-nosed monkey from skin and skulls obtained from local hunters. A small population was found separated from the habitat of other species of snub-nosed monkeys by the Mekong and Salween rivers. The total population has been estimated at just 260-330 individuals...Local hunters reported the presence of a monkey which did not match any description of species previously identified in the area. After further investigation in the north eastern state of Kachin, experts found a small population of previously undiscovered black monkeys with white ear tufts and chin beards, prominent lips and wide upturned nostrils. The image above is not an actual photo but a digital reconstruction based on descriptions...The new species has been named the Burmese snub-nosed monkey (Rhinopithecus strykeri)."

It's a big and very rare find. The image above is a digital reconstruction based on skin and skull evidence.


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