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Last Updated: Friday, 21 January, 2005, 13:54 GMT
Nepal gay group launches journal
By Charles Haviland
BBC News, Kathmandu

Nepal's only gay rights organisation has launched a weekly newspaper, the first publication here of its kind.

The Blue Diamond Society (BDS) says that it wants to give a voice to a range of oppressed communities, not just sexual minorities.

The publication is being funded by the British government.

A British diplomat told the BBC the funding of the project was part of London's campaign to reduce the impact of HIV and Aids.

Budget

The parallel English and Nepali language Blue Diamond Weekly papers are being brought out by BDS, which describes itself as an organisation for sexual minorities, including homosexual, bisexual and trans-gendered people.

BDS has already raised the profile of these communities in this conservative society and its founder, Sunil Pant, says the new paper will focus on all marginalised groups in Nepal whose voices, he says, are never heard.

It will look at the human rights of women and children, dalits - or so-called untouchables - and sex workers, as well as sexual minorities, and will focus on HIV and Aids prevention.

It is being funded by Britain's Department for International Development, which has a budget for small projects like this.

The British Embassy will administer the grant, which must be spent in line with departmental objectives.

The British diplomat said the aim was to help people living with Aids, or at risk of it, to lead fulfilled lives and have greater Aids-related risk awareness. Aids, he pointed out, contributed to poverty.



SEE ALSO:
Human Rights Watch Nepal gay plea
12 Aug 04 |  South Asia


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