Archive for: July 2016

Elton John Pledges Millions To Help LGBTs in Africa

Award-winning singer and composer Elton John have begun a $10m fund that would issue grants and provide expertise to people in homophobic regimes.

The Aids Foundation — which he established — would provide grants to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people in Africa stigmatised and penalised for their sexual orientation. The Aids Foundation would work with the US President Barack Obama’s Pepfar plan for Aids relief.

According to John, he has no power to persuade countries with homophobic laws to change their values:

“I know that certain governments in Africa will not respond to someone like me telling them you should do this, you should do that. I count for nothing as far as that goes.

“What I can do is ensure that people who are LGBT – if their clinics are closed down because they are LGBT – we can give them medicine. If they are arrested, we will get them legal aid,” he said on Wednesday at the international Aids conference in Durban, South Africa.

Many sub-Saharan African countries have anti-homosexuality laws and in some, including Nigeria and Sudan, there is the threat of the death penalty. There is a long history of violent attacks and persecution against LGBT people.

“We will help them on the ground,” said John. “With these countries sometimes, who knows, it might take 50 years, but I guarantee it will change.”

Iraq War Inquiry Will Answer All Criticisms – Chilcot

The Chilcot Report, investigating the role of the UK during the Iraq War alongside the United States, will not be afraid to criticise the operations and the decisions of those who were involved during the time of the Iraq war.

According to Chilcot, the public inquiry will not whitewash anything from the investigation. Chilcot admitted that he and his panellists had judged decisions that may justify a rebuke.

Chilcot said: “I made very clear right at the start of the inquiry that if we came across decisions or behaviour which deserved criticism then we wouldn’t shy away from making it. And, indeed, there have been more than a few instances where we are bound to do that.”

The report would focus on the commitments of former British Prime Minister Tony Blair, his agreement with former US President George Bush.

The investigation also intends to expose whether Mr Blair had misled the public by exaggerating the likelihood of nuclear weapons or weapons of mass destruction. Investigation further revealed that the nuclear weapons were non-existent.

The Chilcot Report had come under fire because of its delays. However, Chilcot said the scale of the investigation was unprecedented and would need an analysis of over 150,000 government documents and getting agreement from the government of how much information can be published.