Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Gay activists seek rights in the Middle East

This week has been full of Web site updating, deadlines and pitches, but one of the things I have covered over the last few days is the push to secure rights for LGBT people in the Middle East.

The International Gay & Lesbian Human Rights Commission honored Helem, an LGBT rights organization based in the Middle East, at a ceremony at New York University on Monday. And Helem member Georges Azzi, who accepted the award on behalf of his organization, was among those who were on a panel to discuss LGBT rights in the Arab Middle East at the LGBT Community Center in lower Manhattan.

I just posted a story onto EDGE, but the thing to take away from the Middle East is it contains within it a variety of cultures, religiosity and societies. And levels of tolerance and acceptance of homosexuality are simply a manifestation of this complex tapestry that comprises the region. The situation on the ground is almost certainly much different than the nightly news may indicate. And Helem and Azzi and other activists who work within the region are truly making a difference in the lives of their LGBT brothers and sisters.

No comments: