January 7 After winning multiple awards for starring in the cult film “Strella”, Mina Orfanou becomes the first transgender actress with a regular role in a greek tv show.
The award-winning film “Zenne Dancer”, dealing with the subject of honor killings of homosexuals, makes its debut on the big screen in Turkey.
January 16 “Society is not ready to accept openly gay professional footballers” according to the captain of the german national team Philipp Lahm…
January 17 A bill that would have banned incitement to hatred based on race, religion and sexual orientation will not be debated in the greek parliament after all, due to the objections of right-wing parties supporting the coalition government…
Sex and the City’s Cynthia Nixon causes a controversy in the U.S. when she claims that “for me, being gay is a choice”.
January 23 “I am against awards because they diminish human dignity.” Emblematic poet of the gay sub-culture in his native Thessaloniki, Dinos Christianopoulos refuses the highest literary honour awarded to him by the greek Ministry of Culture.
February 5 Openly gay former minister for the Environment Pekka Haavisto loses in the second round of Finland’s presidential election.
February 19 “Parada”, a comedy that broke box-office records in the Balkans, about a group of gays that enlist petty criminals and former warriors in order to protect Belgrade’s Gay Pride from neonazi thugs, wins three awards in the Berlin Film Festival.
February 26 Christopher Plummer wins the Academy award for Best Supporting Actor for the role of an elderly father who comes out of the closet in “The Beginners”.
February 29 In Russia, the city of St Petersburg bans any public manifestation or discussion of homosexuality, provoking an international outcry.
March 3 Hollywood luminaries like Brad Pitt and George Clooney star in a benefit production inspired from California’s same-sex marriage court saga.
March 5 The mayor of Tilos island Tasos Aliferis dies at the age of 61. He was the only elected official to perform same-sex marriages in Greece.
In an open letter to the press, Omar Sharif junior -grandson of the Hollywood legend- reveals that he is gay and asks the egyptian government to respect the rights of gays and lesbians in his home country.
March 19 Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf, president of Liberia and Nobel Peace Prize laureate, says she has no intention of changing laws that ban gay sex in her homeland.
March 27 Celebrated lesbian poet and essayist Adrienne Rich dies in California at the age of 82.
April 4 Chile passes a law banning discrimination against gays and lesbians after members of a neonazi gang brutally murder a 24-year-old gay man, in a crime that shocked the nation.
April 10 The “Miss Universe” beauty pageant decides to let transgender participants compete after the outcry provoked by the exclusion of canadian Jenna Talackova.
April 25 Leading psychiatrist Robert Spitzer apologises to the gay community for a 2001 study which claimed that homosexuality can be “cured”, based on false evidence.
May 9 Six months ahead of the presidential election, U.S. president Barack Obama comes out in support of same-sex marriage.
May 20 Far-right thuggery also leads to the cancelation of the first planned LGBT Pride in the capital of Ukraine…
Denmark becomes the eleventh country in the world to recognize same-sex marriage – both civil and religious.
June 23 Thessaloniki, Greece’s second biggest city, celebrates Pride for the first time. Mayor Yannis Boutaris opens the festivities, with the city’s landmark White Tower lighting up in rainbow colors.
June 27 Marvel Comics celebrate their first gay nuptials as super hero Northstar marries his boyfriend Kyle in the 51st issue of Astonishing X-Men.
July 2 CNN’s celebrated war correspondent Anderson Cooper talks about being gay for the first time.
July 3 In his maiden speech to the National Assembly, France’s new prime-minister Jean-Marc Ayrault announces that marriage and adoption will be extended to same-sex couples by mid-2013.
July 17 The Boy Scouts of America decide to continue their ban on gay and lesbian members following a two-year internal review…
July 20 The Union of European Football Associations (UEFA) slams italian player Antonio Cassano with a €15.000 fine for his homophobic statements.
France makes discrimination against transgender individuals a punishable offence.
One of America’s greatest writers and essayists, Gore Vidal dies at the age of 86.
September 6 Greece is ranked among the top-ten destinations most likely to be visited by gay travelers in 2013 in OutNow Consultancy’s annual international LGBT tourism survey.
September 13 “We have to send a clear message, that in this country there is nothing for you to be afraid of”: Chancellor Angela Merkel comments on the reluctance of gay players to come out because of homophobia in Germany’s football leagues.
September 25 In his maiden speech to the UN General Assembly, french president François Hollande lists the campaign to de-criminalise homosexuality around the world as one of the top priorities of french diplomacy.
September 26 Shipping magnate Cecil Chao offers 500 million Hong Kong dollars to any man that could convince his lesbian daughter to marry him – despite the fact that she is already married to a woman…
35 people are arrested as religious zealots and members of the neonazi “Golden Dawn” group protest the staging of “Corpus Christi” in Athens. Terrence MacNally’s theatre play depicts Jesus and his disciples as gay men living in modern-day Texas.
November 7 French aviation magnate, senator and publisher Serge Dassault reacts to the same-sex marriage bill presented by the french government by claiming that “homosexuality led to the decline of the ancient greeks”.
November 23 The president of Italy condemns homophobia in a written statement, after a 15-year-old subjected to homophobic abuse through the social media takes his own life.
November 30 The first gay-friendly mosque on european soil opens its doors in Paris.
December 11 The UK government’s intention to ban the Church of England from performing same-sex marriages becomes the cause of controversy. The minister for Equality reveals that a parliamentary vote on the same-sex marriage bill will take place by late 2013.
December 13 Pope Benedict XVI provokes an outcry by giving his blessing to the speaker of Uganda’s parliament, who is the main proponent of a bill that would impose the death penalty on homosexuals…
December 16 Thousands of people -among them the city’s openly gay mayor Bertrand Delanoë- take to the streets of Paris in favour of same-sex marriage and parenthood. The demonstrations come as a responce to the large rallies of same-sex marriage opponents a month earlier.
12 months, 58 events from 24 countries: France, the U.S. and the UK moved decisively towards marriage equality in 2012, while latin american nations like Uruguay and Colombia are very likely to join them in 2013. At the same time LGBTs faced escalating violence around the world in countries as diverse as Greece, Turkey, Italy, Russia, Ukraine, Lebanon and Chile…