In the News This Week

by Debra Brown

Taiwan Same-sex marriage

Each Wednesday, we recap the most important headlines from our global community to keep you up to speed on world news.


Taiwan Becomes First Country in Asia to Legalize Same-sex Marriage.

Lawmakers in Taiwan have approved a bill legalizing same-sex marriage, making them the first country in Asia to legalize gay marriage.

The vote came almost two years after the island’s Constitutional Court ruled that the existing law, which said marriage was between a man and a woman, was unconstitutional.

More than two dozen countries around the world allow gay marriage, according to Pew Research.


Missouri Lawmakers Pass Bill Criminalizing Abortion at 8 Weeks.

Missouri lawmakers became the latest state to approve legislation to ban abortion, after eight weeks of pregnancy. The bill bans abortions after a fetal heartbeat is detected.

The Missouri Stands for the Unborn Act, now needs to be signed by Governor Mike Parson, a Republican, who is expected to sign it. The bill does not include exceptions for rape or incest.

Missouri’s bill includes bans on abortions based on race, sex and Down syndrome diagnosis. It also includes a tax credit for donations to pregnancy centers run by abortion opponents, and a requirement that both parents be notified when a minor seeks an abortion. Current law requires consent from only one parent.


Pakistan Doctor Arrested After 494 Children Diagnosed with HIV.

Hundreds of people have been found infected with HIV in a Pakistani city, in an unprecedented outbreak of the virus where children are the worst affected.

In total, 607 were HIV positive: 113 adults and 494 children. According to the authorities, in most cases the parents of these children are not HIV positive. The children ranged in age from 2 months to 8 years.

Dr Muzaffar Ghangro, has been arrested on charges of spreading Aids through syringes. The doctor has denied wrongdoing.

Dr. Minhaj Kidwai, the CEO of the Sindh Health Care Commission, an independent, government-funded group, believes that the outbreak is a result of “contaminated syringes, syringes that are reused for injections in children, unscreened blood transfusions and reuse of dextrose and saline drips.”

Researchers have yet to determine the exact source of the outbreak, but believe the virus has been spread by ‘quack’ doctors who specialise in injections and drips, but do not use clean needles.

The United Nations in Pakistan is working closely with the federal and provincial governments to quickly respond to the HIV outbreak. About 500 unregulated clinics have been ordered closed across the province, the health authorities reported.


Migrant Child is 5th To Die in U.S. Custody this Year.

A 16-year-old has become the fifth migrant child since December to die after being apprehended at the U.S. border.

In a statement, U.S. Customs and Border Protection said the boy, whose name was not released, was “found unresponsive” during a routine welfare check Monday morning at Weslaco Station, the facility where he was being held.

The cause of death is unknown and the case is being reviewed by CBP’s Office of Professional Responsibility.


Sybrina Fulton is Running for Miami-Dade County Commission.

Trayvon Martin’s mother, Sybrina Fulton, is launching a campaign to become a Miami-Dade County commissioner. Fulton became a passionate gun control and anti-poverty activist following the shooting death of her unarmed teenage son seven years ago.

Since her son’s death, Fulton has frequently spoken out about gun control, campaigned for Hillary Clinton, co-wrote a book about her experiences and launched the Trayvon Martin Foundation.


Photo via: Reuters

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