Out Abroad: Gay Bars Raided in Russia; Possible Marriage Equality in Thailand

Photo via hrg.org.

Gay bars were raided in Russia, Thailand might pay a marriage equality law, and a Scottish court ruled that the government's veto was lawful.

Gay Bars Raided After Russia’s ‘Extremist’ Ruling

Following Russia’s ruling that labeled the international LGBTQ movement as “extremist,” gay bars were raided by Russian security forces across Moscow. 

According to Al Jazeera, police officers searched nightclubs, a male sauna, and a bar that hosts LGBTQ parties under the pretext of a drug raid. 

The raids occurred less than 48 hours after the ruling was announced.

Witnesses interviewed by local media said police checked and photographed patrons' documents during the raid. 

The ruling, which activists believe was intentionally vague, gives authorities the power to question and prosecute anyone they believe is a part of the movement. 

In a statement, Amnesty International called the ruling “shameful and absurd,” saying it could result in a blanket ban on LGBTQ organizations.

Possible Marriage Equality Law In Thailand


Photo by Sofia Hernandez via Unsplash.

Same-sex marriage may soon be legal in Thailand.

According to Al Jazeera, the Thai government endorsed a bill that would amend the country’s Civil and Commercial Code to define marriage as a union between any two “individuals.”

If approved, Thailand would be the first country in Southeast Asia to legalize same-sex marriage.

“The prime minister [wants to] push [it] very much. He wants to see this bill appear in the Parliament debate as soon as possible,” Chai Watcharong, a government spokesperson, told Al Jazeera.

The bill would afford the same rights offered between male and female unions, to same-sex unions.

“Even though they are male and male, they love each other … so they should have the right,” said Watcharong.

Scottish Court Rules Government Veto Was Lawful


Photo via scottishtrans.org.

Scotland’s highest court ruled that the veto of a contentious gender recognition reform bill was lawful, sparking disappointment from LGBTQ campaigners.

According to The Guardian, the review was brought by Scotland’s secretary, Alister Jack, who made the order to prevent the bill going for royal assent in January.

The bill was passed by a cross-party majority in the Holyrood parliament in December 2022 and proposed the introduction of a self-identification system for people who want to change their legally recognized sex.

“Devolution is fundamentally flawed if the UK government is able to override the democratic wishes of the Scottish parliament, and veto our laws at the stroke of a pen,” Shirley-Anne Somerville, the Scottish government’s social justice secretary, told The Guardian.

Following the ruling, advocates sprang into action and urged that ministers lodge an appeal.

“We are really concerned that this judgment, if left unchallenged, means that trans people will continue to have to use the intrusive, unfair and expensive process for being legally recognised as who we truly are,” Vic Valentine, manager of Scottish Trans, said to The Guardian.

The government has 21 days to appeal the ruling.


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