Philippines: Rejects U.S. Marine's request to drop transgender murder case

MANILA, Philippines -- The Philippines on Tuesday rejected an appeal by a U.S. Marine that it drop a murder case against him in the death of a transgender Filipino woman last year.

A department of justice panel said evidence from prosecutors against Pfc. Joseph Scott Pemberton of Bristol, Massachusetts showed that he killed Jennifer Laude after picking her up in a bar in Olongapo city in October.

Police said Laude was found dead with her head inside a toilet bowl in a hotel minutes after Pemberton left the room.

First Circuit urged to reverse ruling dismissing Puerto Rico marriage case

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico — Lambda Legal on Monday filed a brief urging the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit to overturn a lower court ruling dismissing Conde-Vidal v. Garcia-Padilla, the lawsuit seeking to end the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico’s discriminatory ban on marriage for LGBT couples.

UK: British Army general on verge of making historic coming out

LONDON, England -- A married British Army general is on the verge of coming out as gay – an announcement which would send shockwaves through the Armed Forces.

He has kept his ­homosexuality secret since joining 25 years ago. When he signed up it was illegal to be gay in the forces.

The officer – who holds the highest rank achievable for a professional soldier – has served on tours in Iraq, ­Afghanistan and Northern Ireland.

The father, who has an open relationship with his wife, said he wants to speak out despite being told it could be “career suicide.”

Russia: Founder of support group for LGBT youth fined for "gay propaganda"

MOSCOW, Russia -- Yelena Klimova, the founder of an online support group for LGBT teenagers, has been fined 50,000 rubles ($780) for violating Russia's controversial law against the "propaganda of nontraditional sexual relations among minors," she announced Friday.

France: Court convicts three over homophobic tweets

PARIS, France -- A French court has handed out convictions for anti-gay hate crimes on Twitter for the first time, after three people used the hashtag “let’s burn the gays.”

In what a major French LGBT rights group called a “significant victory,” three people were convicted in a Paris court this week after they accompanied tweets with hashtags including “let’s burn the gays on..." or "#brûlonslesgayssurdu).”

During the same period in August 2013, “#Lesgaysdoiventdisparaîtrecar,” or “gays must die because...” was also trending.

Five same-sex couples denied marriage certificates in Tijuana

TIJUANA, Baja California, Mexico -- The same-sex marriage dance has now begun in Tijuana, San Diego's sister city south of the border.

Five same-sex couples this week have applied for marriage licenses and have been denied, according to local media. This action was fully expected, since Baja California's Article 143 of the Civil Code prohibits gay marriage.

Mexicali finally allows gay couple to marry, and Tijuana may be next

MEXICALI, Baja California, Mexico -- Victor Fernando Urias Amparo, 37, and Victor Manuel Aguirre Espinoza, 43, came to Mexicali City Hall on Saturday to join hundreds of protesters against ongoing city efforts to prevent them from marrying.

But in an unexpected twist, they ended up in the middle of a hastily planned wedding ceremony in front of jubilant supporters and a crush of media from Mexico and the United States.

Mexicali officials may face criminal charges for refusing to allow gay marriage

MEXICALI, Baja California, Mexico – The mayor of Mexicali and other city and state officials may face criminal charges for refusing the Mexican Supreme Court’s order to marry two gay men, according to news reports.

European Parliament urges Kyrgyzstan to drop anti-LGBTI bill

In a resolution adopted today, the European Parliament calls on Kyrgyzstan to reject a bill which would censor information on LGBTI issues. The draft law would punish the dissemination of information “aimed at forming positive attitudes toward non-traditional sexual relations.”

The Kyrgyz bill closely resembles the Russian anti-propaganda law, but foresees harsher punishments: persons found "guilty" face up to one year imprisonment.

Turkey: TV music channels fined for sexual videos, one showing lesbian kiss

ANKARA, Turkey -- The nation's media watchdog has issued fines to two TV music channels for broadcasting videos that showed sexuality scenes, including one that featured a lesbian kiss.

The conservative nation that straddles Europe and Asia is overwhelmingly Muslim and although secular has shown in recent years to be bowing to pressure from right-wing religious groups.