DJ leaves estate to life partner
LONDON, England — A radio DJ who died after a night of drug use on Dec. 29, 2007, has left more than £515,575 to his life partner, according to The 1991 will of Keven Greening (pictured) stipulates that Andrew Lowe be the principal beneficiary of the estate. A coroner’s report detailed that Greening had taken ecstasy and cocaine. The DJ also suffered a heart attack.

“After the payment of debts, funeral and testimony expenses and any inheritance tax which may be payable I give my whole estate to the said Andrew Lowe absolutely,” Greening wrote in his will. He worked for Radio 1 between 1997 and 1998. He later worked on Radio 5 Live and Smooth Radio. After his death, numerous radio stations offered tributes to the deceased DJ.

BBC Radio 5 Live’s Simon Mayo said, “He had a very, very dry sense of humour and he was quite shy really, sometimes embarrassed about having achieved the level of fame that he did have. Anyone who listened to his programmes could tell he was extremely bright, extremely clever. He was a fantastic example as to how much work should go into a programme. He was naturally gifted, and I frankly find it rather hard to believe that he’s not with us any more.”

Gay Iraqis face continued threats
BAGHDAD, Iraq — On July 25, CNN International profiled two Iraqi teens and their daily life-or-death struggles as openly gay citizens in a nation that continues to deny the most basic of human rights to its LGBT populace.

Kamal was only 16 when gunmen kidnapped him as he walked down a Baghdad street. They stuffed him in the trunk of a car. When the kidnappers found out Kamal was gay, they raped him under threat of death.

Now 18, Kamal and his 21-year-old friend Rami face daily threats of death or torture. They told CNN that they spend a lot of time in internet cafés trying to connect with other gay people their age. Even still, the threat of a crackdown or sting at the cafés worries them.

Since the fall of Saddam Hussein in 2003 the treatment of LGBT Iraqis has continually declined. Armed militias and insurgents have targeted LGBT citizens and their is little protection from U.S. military forces and the new Iraqi government.

Complaints filed for gay blessing
ESPOO, Finland — A pastor in the Finnish Evangelical Lutheran Church, the state-supported church, is the subject of two official complaints after she blessed the union of a same-sex couple, according to YLE News.

Liisa Tuovinen performed the blessing of the registered partnership in mid-July at a parish summer camp facility. The Bishop of Espoo, Mikko Heikka, said then that the church would not be able to place any sanctions on Tuovinen or start the process toward sanctions unless a formal complaint was filed. On July 28, two were submitted. They allege that Tuovinen’s actions violated the official policy of the church. The church will start the process of hearing the complaints sometime this month.

In 2006, another Lutheran minister was the subject of a similar complaint, although no actions were ever taken by the church. Bishops have planned to take up the issue at their meeting next year. Nine out of 10 Finnish citizens are members of the Finnish Evangelical Lutheran Church. Same-sex couples have been allowed domestic partnerships in the nation since 2002.

Gay Africans at Anglican conference
CANTERBURY, England — The decennial, global gathering of Anglican bishops took place here July18-Aug. 3. Among the more than 800 bishops and their spouses who attended the conference were openly gay citizens of Nigeria, where being openly LGBT is not only rare, but life-threatening.

Davis Mac-Iyalla an openly gay Anglican from Nigeria, and other openly gay Anglicans from the nation spent time in the historic seat of the global Anglican Communion protesting and raising awareness of the suffering they’ve faced under the reign of their bishop, Peter Jasper Akinola, who, with other conservative bishops, chose to boycott the conference.

“I think they should open their ears to listen rather than doing the talking,” Mac-Iyalla told the BBC. “For people like me and my members, to begin to come out, to have pride in who we are — I think change is coming. The bishops need to know that what comes out of their mouths is affecting us, and putting us in a very difficult situation.”

Openly gay New Hampshire Bishop V. Gene Robinson, who was dis-invited from the conference by the Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams, spent July speaking at various congregations in the U.K. and raising awareness of the issues LGBT people continue to face in the U.S. Episcopalian Church and throughout the worldwide Anglican Communion.

Lube containing steroids seized
SYDNEY, Australia — Customs officials here have seized more than 100 bottles labeled “gay lube oil,” (pictured, compliments of Australian Customs) after having found traces of illegal liquid steroids hidden inside the lubricant packaging, according to The Sydney Morning Herald. Officials say the drug smuggling network is being investigated and bottles of the lube have been seized in five Australian states since the beginning of the year.

Richard Janeczko, national manager of customs investigations, said the lube contained various active ingredients including testosterone and deca durabolin. The drugs cannot be imported into the nation without a permit from the Therapeutic Goods Administration. “Despite the professionalism of this smuggling operation, Customs officers were not fooled by the labelling and its misdescription,” Janeczko told The Herald.

He added that the substances in the lube have the potential to cause serious health risks. The maximum criminal penalty for smuggling drugs into the nation is five years in prison and a $110,000 fine.

Matt Comer

Matt Comer previously served as editor from October 2007 through August 2015 and as a staff writer afterward in 2016.