The website Foreign Policy reports on the leading gay rights battlefields around the world.
Don't Ask Don't Tell might be finished in the United States but, in many countries, the fight for gay equality has far bigger challenges to overcome.
Same-sex marriage has been illegal in Honduras since 2005. And though relations between people of the same sex are not outlawed, authorities turn a blind eye to violence against gays. In this Central American country, police are frequently the worst perpetrators of anti-LGBT (particularly anti-transgender) violence.
In a country whose people are divided almost equally between Christian and Muslim faiths, all Nigerian religious leaders seem to come together around a single issue: the persecution of homosexuals. A sodomy conviction carries a 14-year prison sentence under federal law, and homosexuality is punishable by death in the 12 states that practice Islamic law. In the most dramatic example, 18 young men in the northern city of Bauchi were arrested for supposed cross-dressing in 2007, only to later be charged with sodomy -- an offense that, in the Islamic courts of northern Nigeria, could have incurred execution by stoning. (Luckily, they were later released after international pressure was brought to bear.)
Despite the general agreement among faiths, it's the Anglican Church that has been particularly outspoken against homosexuality in Nigeria. (photo of retired Abp Akinola)
Malaysia today boasts a morality police charged with arresting homosexuals. Being gay holds a penalty of up to 20 years in prison, and the government censorship board has banned films about lesbian and gay issues for being against Malaysian culture and Islam.
... July 2005 execution of two young gay boys on charges of rape and disturbing the public order. Sadly, it's not an uncommon occurrence: Gay Iranians regularly face police and paramilitary brutality, discrimination, and isolation at school and within their families.
Indeed, many homosexuals in Iran are so fearful that, as a recent Human Rights Watch report details, they seek sex-change operations: "Iran has become renowned throughout the world for its relatively large number of sex reassignment surgeries -- at least some of which have been performed on Iranians who likely self-identified as gay, lesbian, or bisexual but who felt compelled to undergo the procedure to erase the 'stain' of homosexuality and become 'legal' under Iranian law," the report reads.
Read the report here.