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Dutch Foreign Minister Delivers Angry, Emotional Address to the UN on MH17 Tragedy: VIDEO

Oosterom

Frans Timmermans of the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs , addressed the United Nations yesterday over the shooting down of MH17, which had among its 298 passengers 192 Dutch citizens (including one passenger with dual US-Netherlands citizenship).

Timmermans's speech reflected the anger and bewilderment the world is feeling over the incident and its aftermath, along with the emotion. Said Timmermans of the victims:

"Did they lock hands with their loved ones? Did they hold their children close to their hearts? Did they look each other in the eyes one final time in a wordless goodbye? We will never know."

Watch, AFTER THE JUMP...

(via mashable - note: Timmermans is misidentified in the CSPAN embed as  Karel J. G. van Oosterom)

Continue reading "Dutch Foreign Minister Delivers Angry, Emotional Address to the UN on MH17 Tragedy: VIDEO" »


LGBT Activists Create 'Gay Village' Hoax to Raise Awareness About Homophobia

WelkomInNederland

The town of Tilburg in the Netherlands recently created a genius plan to confront homophobia head on, threatening to create a "gay village" and effectively segregate society. Organizers of Pink Monday, an event promoting tolerance of the LGBT population, proposed the village with developer Blauwhoed after statistics showed that 30% of lesbians and 22% of gay men did not feel safe in their home country. Controversy and backlash ensued before the plan was revealed to be a hoax.

Yahoo! News reports:

Peter van der Vorst, a Dutch radio presenter, tweeted that the village would be "a fenced gay ghetto", while Cornald Maas, a television presenter, commented: "Shameful and moron plan, it is like creating an outdated ghetto community for a safer 'straight' society."

Tanja Ineke, president of the gay rights group COC Netherlands, condemned the plan and commented that law enforcement should improve safety and social inclusion.

"This is not the direction we want to go in to solve the security problems of the LGBT community," she said. "It is up to the police, local authorities and central government to solve them so that LGBTs in every city, every neighbourhood and every street feel safe, not only in a separate area with a fence around it."

The project's planners went so far as to make a website.

"We go further than just housing," the Gay Village website read. "Together with the future residents, we determine which services will provide for the community: its own supermarket, tennis court, a cooking school, a chapel or a gym, so you live in a quiet green area with all mod cons."

Pink Monday organizers were pleased with the outrage their plan engendered, stating: "All we wanted was to create an awareness, and we are certain that we succeeded in this." 

Well-played, Netherlands. Well-played.


Two Frenchmen Jailed for Brutal Assault on Gay Man

Debruijn

This photo of Wilfred de Bruijn's bloodied face made international headlines in 2013 after he was assaulted while walking arm-in-arm with his boyfriend in Paris.

The two men who attacked him were finally jailed, Dutch News reports:

Two Frenchmen were sentenced to 2.5 years in jail, with 12 and 18 months suspended, in Paris on Tuesday for beating up a gay Dutch man.

Wilfred de Bruijn, who lives in the French capital city, was walking home with his friend one evening in April last year when the two Frenchmen jumped him. During the attack, which made international headlines, De Bruijn was kicked in the face, suffering a broken tooth and cracks in his jaw and skull.

A man who witnessed the attack but did not help the Dutchman was given a six-month suspended jail sentence.


Norway, Denmark, and the Netherlands Redirect Aid Away from Ugandan Government Over Anti-Gay Law

Three countries have made moves restricting AID to Uganda after President Museveni's signing of the anti-gay bill, Al Jazeera reports:

Cnn_museveniThe Netherlands froze a $9.6m subsidy to Uganda's legal system, arguing that "if the judiciary is to enforce such laws, we do not wish to assist that process". Denmark and Norway said they would redirect around $8.5m each in government aid towards private sector initiatives, aid agencies and rights organisations.

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry has said that the U.S. is "beginning an internal review of our relationship" in a statement released yesterday. The British Foreign Secretary has denounced the bill and said it would "continue to press the Government of Uganda to defend human rights for all."


Dutch Diplomat Attacked in Moscow; Assailants Write 'LGBT' in Lipstick on Mirror - PHOTO

Lgbt

Dutch diplomat Onno Elderenbosch was tied up and beaten by two men who entered his apartment in Moscow Tuesday night, and slightly injured, according to Dutch Foreign Minister Frans Timmermans, the AP reports.

ElderenboschI've taken a screengrab of a LifeNews broadcast which reportedly shows that the attackers left a pink heart in lipstick with the Russian letters 'LGBT' under it. The photo was said to be taken in Elderenbosch's apartment, which is also shown to have been rifled through.

The AP adds:

The Dutch have been outspoken in their criticism of Russia's anti-gay policies. In April, the Amsterdam mayor expressed his opposition by declining to meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin during his visit to the Netherlands. And in August, Dutch gay groups held a protest ahead of a major concert by Russian state musicians and dancers...

...The top Dutch gay rights organization, COC, condemned the attack.

"It is terrible for the person involved and appears to be another expression of the swiftly deteriorating climate for LGBTs in Russia," COC chairperson Tanja Ineke said in a statement. She urged the king to go ahead with his visit to Russia and to raise the issue of human and gay rights with Putin.

 


Thousands Protest Russia's Anti-Gay Laws In Amsterdam: VIDEO

Amst

Over 2,000 protesters took to the streets of Amsterdam on Sunday to show their support for gay rights and to rebuke Russia’s anti-gay laws and Russian President Vladimir Putin. The AP reports:

VanderlaanAmsterdam Mayor Eberhard van der Laan told the crowd he hoped the protest would send the message to Moscow that "love is not propaganda."

Afterward in an interview with The Associated Press, he said the city "is proud of its homosexual community and they have the right to support from government" — not persecution. Amsterdam has a long history of tolerance of gay rights, including performing the first gay marriages in 2001 [...]

Sunday's protest, titled "To Russia With Love," was organized in response to a concert featuring a Russian state orchestra and choir that was held on the far side of the square later in the evening. The two countries have named 2013 as a special year to celebrate historical ties.

But Van der Laan declined to meet with Putin when he visited the Netherlands in March, sending lesbian councilwoman Carolien Gehrels in his place and flying a rainbow flag over city hall.

Organizer Frank van Dalen of Pride United said he was thrilled with the turnout for Sunday's demonstration, which was put together in a matter of days — word spread quickly on social media.

"It shows that people are incredibly angry" about Russian treatment of gays, he said. "Not only gays and lesbians, but heterosexuals have come out to support them, and transgender and bisexual — this is something that concerns everyone."

Back in April, over 3,000 people in Amsterdam signed up for a protest of Russian President Vladimir Putin’s visit to the Dutch capital because of his support for the then-proposed anti-gay law which was ultimately passed and went into effect in June. Rainbow flags were flown all across the city, some at half-mast and some strategically placed to guarantee that President Putin would see them during his stay in Amsterdam.

Sunday's protests in Museum Square come on the heels of last week's protests in Copenghagen that saw over 10,000 people take to the streets to condemn Putin and his country's anti-gay laws. Last week also saw gay rights supporters coming up with other inventive ways to protest the criminalization of gay rights in Russia.

Watch as Dutch protesters sing along to a rendition of "To Russia With Love" AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "Thousands Protest Russia's Anti-Gay Laws In Amsterdam: VIDEO" »


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