Ukraine, Europe


 In Ukraine homosexual sex was legalised and the age of consent equalized in 1991 but there is no recognition with respect to gay marriage or civil unions and there are no anti-discrimination laws. For better or worse, gay Ukrainians have been ignored by the political establishment. The country is conservative, mainly Orthodox Christian.  The  Constitution states that citizens are equal before law, but sexual orientation is not specifically mentioned. However, the list of grounds of discrimination includes an "on other basis", which could be used for gay protection, but it has never been tested in court. In June 2008 three leading gay and lesbian organizations in the Ukraine formed the Union of Gay Organizations of Ukraine (UGOU). The groups' purpose was to unite activists in three main areas: advocating rights and freedoms of gay people, mobilizing the gay community and improving the effectiveness of HIV-infection prevention among homosexuals. The Gay Alliance, Gay Alliance Cerkasy, and Nash Mir Gay & Lesbian Center provide an even wider range of information, advocacy, social, and health protection services.

For LGBT citizens in the southern peninsula of Crimea everything changed in 2014 when Russia forced its way into the area and then imposed a referendum that was approved by most people (ethnic Russians) to become a province of Russia. This meant that the existing laws of Russia came into force including the highly discriminatory anti-gay propaganda law which forbids any public advocacy or portrayal of LGBT life or rights. The quiet tolerance of gay citizens became an intolerance and many gay Crimeans moved away to the Ukrainian mainland where they could at least breathe more freely without police intervention in their lives. A recent report in Time magazine described how the last gay venue--Qbar in Sebastopol--closed and the owners, a gay male couple and their son, moved to Kiev.

 

 

 

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Gay Life in Ukraine 2012-14

| October 16th, 2014 | Comments Off

Introduction There are many fronts in the universal struggle for gay rights and LGBT equality. Some of these fronts are violent, some are passive, some are out and proud and colorful while others are underground. All of them involve courage, stealth, strategic planning, public relations, political lobbying and greater or lesser amounts of money. In 2012 Ukraine the efforts for “Gay Life in Ukraine” are no less strained and courageous. Yet, despite Orthodox Catholic opposition, homophobic skinheads, political bigotry and a conservative society, the ‘International Forum of LGBT–Festival Kiev Pride2012′ (one of 19 LGBT groups that form the larger ‘Council of LGBT Organizations of Ukraine’)–tried to stage a Pride Parade and Festival in May 2012. It was cancelled by the authorities who feared violence. In was to be a test whether Ukraine was ready or not for the European Community with its tolerant human rights standards. It was not. For LGBT

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Gay Ukraine After the Revolution: Life is Dangerous

| August 2nd, 2014 | Comments Off

Activist Globa Bogdan, who had his hopes for Kiev Pride dashed this year, says the culture of machismo threatens LGBT Ukrainians.   By Thom Senzee July 09 2014 The Advocate (http://www.advocate.com/world/2014/07/09/kiev-activist-life-dangerous-lgbt-ukrainians) (Photo right: activist Globa Bogdan at Baltimore Pride 2013 ) For Bogdan Globa, founder and executive director of Tochka Opory|Fulcrum, an LGBT rights advocacy organization in Ukraine, the dream of celebrating LGBT Pride the way he saw it done in America seems farther away than ever following the cancellation of Kiev’s 2014 March for Equality last week. Yet this young gay activist remains determined and optimistic in a country he sees as intoxicated with machismo after having stood up to its behemoth neighbor to the north, Russia. However, that bravado is making it harder than ever to be an LGBT Ukrainian. Globa, whose organization includes a project similar in mission to PFLAG called TERGO, and his mother, Olena Globa,

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Best Gay Nude Beach in Ukraine: Simeiz Village

| October 17th, 2013 | Comments Off

Below is an article from the Ukrainian gay newspaper ‘Our World’ praising the attractions of this heavenly beautiful place. Introduction The fame of Simeiz (located on the Crimean peninsula, near the city of Yalta) as a gay resort goes as far back as to the 70s, when homosexuality was still criminally prosecuted and hundreds of Soviet gays were jailed each year. In part due to its remoteness from main tourist attractions of the Republic of Crimea haunted by happy heterosexual families, Simeiz used to be (and so remains) the most flamboyant gay beach of the former Soviet Union. In terms of infrastructure, it has not much to offer as compared to Sitges in Spain. Simeiz’s fame has spread rapidly around the world. Today in summer you can find here gays from Moscow and Kiev, USA and Holland, UK, France, Australia and Belgium. Gay Black Sea Area Simeiz is a spa

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Ukraine, Lviv Photos 1

| July 7th, 2012 | Comments Off

Lviv is the largest city in western Ukraine and is regarded as one of the main cultural centers of the country. The old heart of Lviv with its 19th century buildings and cobblestone roads survived World War II and then the Soviet occupation largely unscathed. There are many industries and institutions of higher education such as the Lviv University and the Lviv Polytechnic. Lviv is also a home to the philharmonic orchestra with its base in the beautiful Theatre of Opera and Ballet. The historic city centre is on the UNESCO World Heritage List. In September 2006 the city celebrated its 750th anniversary with much fanfare. Posted L'viv, L'vivs'ka, Ukraine.

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Ukraine, Lviv Photos 2

| July 7th, 2012 | Comments Off

Lviv is the largest city in western Ukraine and is regarded as one of the main cultural centers of the country. The old heart of Lviv with its 19th century buildings and cobblestone roads survived World War II and then the Soviet occupation largely unscathed. There are many industries and institutions of higher education such as the Lviv University and the Lviv Polytechnic. Lviv is also a home to the philharmonic orchestra with its base in the beautiful Theatre of Opera and Ballet. The historic city centre is on the UNESCO World Heritage List. In September 2006 the city celebrated its 750th anniversary with much fanfare.   Posted Lviv, L'vivs'ka oblast, Ukraine.

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Ukraine, Kiev Photos 2

| July 3rd, 2012 | Comments Off

Kiev, the capital of Ukraine, is a progressive stylish and educated city with magnificent church architecture, world class museums and a long history of invasion and occupation. Today it vibrates with modern life, high tech, antique shops and vegetable markets .   Posted Kiev, Kiev City, Ukraine.

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Ukraine, Kiev Photos 1

| July 3rd, 2012 | Comments Off

Kiev or Kyiv is the capital and the largest city of Ukraine, located in the north central part of the country on the Dnieper River. The population is about 3 million. It is a major industrial, scientific and cultural center for Eastern Europe. It is also the location for many  industries, schools and universities and world-famous historical and religious landmarks.   Posted Kiev, Kyiv city, Ukraine.

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Yalta, Crimea, Ukraine

| June 6th, 2012 | Comments Off

Yalta is an historic resort city that bubbles with modern life, cruise ships, shops and restaurants and a long waterfront promenade along the Black Sea. Surrounding the city are snowcapped pine covered mountains, vast vineyards and sprawling suburban townships. Since the 19th century the city was a health spa for health impaired aristocrats and commoners who built large and small dacha summer houses. The famous 1945 meeting of Roosevelt, Churchill and Stalin took place at Livadia Palace, the last Russian Czar’s holiday home overlooking the sea.   Posted .

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Balaklava, Ukraine

| June 6th, 2012 | Comments Off

Balaklava is today a sleepy and charming harbor town with yachts, cafes, high hills and a 15th century Genovese castle ruin. Its history goes back 2500 years. However, it’s history is darker and more ominous than now meets the eye. In the mid 20th century here was located an enormous and highly secretive Soviet nuclear submarine factory and base, known as Facility-825. Posted Shyposhi, Poltavs'ka, Ukraine.

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Odessa, Ukraine 1

| June 5th, 2012 | Comments Off

Odessa, Ukraine is a lively commercial, industrial, touristic port city on the Black Sea. It was once the valued seaport for the Soviet Union. Today it still houses some of Russia’s naval ships, by agreement until 2036. The city is famous for it Potemkin  Steps, 192 granite steps (installed in 1841) that lead down to the harbor, which were  used in scenes in the famous film ‘Battleship Potemkin’ by legendary Russian film director Sergei Eisenstein in 1925. Today the city is filled with diverse architecture, old trolley cars, a beautiful opera house, many statues and a wide variety of characters.    Posted Dibrivka, Kirovohrads'ka, Ukraine.

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Odessa, Ukraine 2

| June 4th, 2012 | Comments Off

Odessa, Ukraine is a lively commercial, industrial, touristic port city on the Black Sea. It was once the valued seaport for the Soviet Union. Today it still houses some of Russia’s naval ships, by agreement until 2036. Each year the city mounts a ‘Carnival Humorina’ with a colorful parade of revelers in costumes, funny facial make-up and masks, floats, food, and carnival rides. Posted Dibrivka, Kirovohrads'ka, Ukraine.

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Gay Ukraine Up Close

| April 22nd, 2012 | Comments Off

Introduction Here are two personal testimonies from gay Ukrainian men who know well the ardors of living gay in Ukraine. The first is from a well know TV entertainer and singer who quit the scene rather than be humiliated. The second is by an angry man who has felt confined and limited by his society in exercising his rights and freedom. Both reports are translations from Ukrainian or Russian so the English is awkward. (1) Interview: Kostya Gnatenko and the Sin of Sodomy and Other Things By Alex Varnickiy May 27, 2011 From: Gay Ukraine International Kostya Gnatenko  (photo right) is a symbol for gay people, homosexuals, transvestites in Ukraine. His songs are performed by Iryna Bilyk, Danilko, Natalia Mogilev. He is the author of numerous poems, short stories and fairy tales as well as a showman, and, until recently,  a leading television personality. However, he has paid a big

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Gay Life in Ukraine 2008

| January 1st, 2009 | Comments Off

Introduction From the far reaches on the steppes of Eurasia, a American gay couple residing in Ukraine write about their experience in this difficult new nation: “For the gay male tourist, you are truly in the land of beautiful boys (no attitude and no body fascism).  Of course, we are not as exciting as Berlin or Paris, but Kiev has its own special charm and style. Kiev boasts a lively gay disco, sauna, a few simple bars, even a nude/gay part of our very own “beach” along the Dnipro river…” With slow and careful luck a “Gay Life in Ukraine” can quietly be achieved. By Richard Ammon GlobalGayz.com 2008 (Also see Gay Ukraine story 2012) Brief Overview of Gay Ukraine The following grim commentary is from Gay Ukraine International web site. (The awkward English is original to the site.) Since 1933 in the Soviet Union male homosexuality was illegal and

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