- Peter Tatchell
name = Peter Gary Tatchell
image_size = 220px
caption = Peter Tatchell joining the Green Party in 2004
birth_date = Birth date and age|1952|1|25|df=y
birth_place = Melbourne,
Green Party of England and Wales
nationality = British (Australian citizenship removed on naturalization as a British citizen).
Peter Gary Tatchell (born
25 January 1952) is an Australianborn British human rightsactivist, who gained international celebrity for his attempted citizen's arrestof Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabein 1999 and 2001, on charges of tortureand other human rights abuses.
Tatchell was selected as Labour Party Parliamentary candidate for Bermondsey in 1981, and was denounced by party leader
Michael Footfor supporting extra-parliamentaryaction against the Thatcher government; though the Labour Party subsequently allowed his selection, when he ran in the Bermondsey by-election in February 1983. In the 1990s, he became a prominent gay equalityand LGBTcampaigner through the direct action group OutRage!, which he co-founded. He has tackled a wide variety of human rights issues, and is a frequent contributor on such subjects in print and through broadcast media authoring thousands of articles and six books. In 2006, " New Statesman" readers voted him sixth on their list of "Heroes of our time". [http://www.newstatesman.com/writers/Peter_Tatchell New Statesman Library] – Articles by Peter Tatchell] cite web
url=http://www.newstatesman.com/200605220016|title=Heroes of our time - the top 50|publisher=
In April 2007 he became the Green Party
prospective parliamentary candidatein the constituency of Oxford East. [ [http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk_politics/6587311.stm BBC News: Tatchell to stand for Green Party (2007-04-24)] ] [ [http://news.independent.co.uk/people/pandora/article2455055.ece The "Independent": Green king (2007-04-17)] ] [cite web|url=http://www.redpepper.org.uk/article153.html
title=Why I joined the Greens|publisher=Red Pepper
date=2004-05-05|accessdate=2008-02-05|last=Tatchell|first=Peter] [ [http://www.greenoxford.com/peter Oxfordshire Green Party ] ]
Tatchell was born in
Melbourne, Victoria, Australia. His father, Gordon, was a lathe operator in an engineering factory; while his mother, Mardi, was a housewife and later worked in a biscuit factory. His parents divorced when he was four and his mother remarried soon afterwards. Her second husband, Edwin Nitscke, worked variously as a gardener, factory cleaner and taxi driver. Tatchell's mother was chronic asthmatic and the family finances were strained by medical bills. As a result he was unable to continue his formal education beyond a basic level, and in 1968, at age 16, Tatchell started work as a designer, sign-writer and in Melbourne's principal department stores, first Waltons and then Myer. At the latter, he worked throughout the year to develop international prize-winning animated window displays for the Christmasperiod. Tatchell has said that he has incorporated the theatricality of these displays into his political activism."Is this your life?" television programme, Channel 4, August 5, 1995]
While in Australia he began a lifelong interest in outdoor adventurous activities such as
surfingand mountain climbing, which he says helped him develop the courage to be a political risk-taker in adult life. He stated this while speaking on BBC Radio 4's " Any Questions", in the context of insurance and legal risks preventing British teachers from being willing to take their pupils on outdoor adventures.
His political activity had begun at Mount Waverley High School in Melbourne where, in 1967, he launched campaigns in support of the indigenous Aboriginal population. Tatchell, who was elected by fellow pupils as secretary of the Students' Representative Council and, in his final year, as
School Captain, took the lead in setting up a scholarship scheme for Aboriginal pupils and led a campaign for land rightsfrom 1968. These activities had not been popular with school authorities and led the headmaster to denounce him as having been manipulated by communists. It is an issue he has returned to from 2004 in proposing the renaming of Australian capital cities with their original Aboriginal place names.
He also joined the Australian campaign against the death penalty. Prompted by the impending
hangingof Ronald Ryanin 1967, Tatchell went round his local area daubing slogans against the hanging, an action which was not identified as his until he revealed it in an interview nearly 30 years later."Bermondsey ten years on", " Gay Times", February 1993.]
Ryan was accused of shooting dead a prison warder during an escape from Pentridge Prison. Aged 15, Tatchell worked out that trajectory of the bullet through the warder’s body made it more or less physically impossible that Ryan could have fired the fatal shot. More likely, the warder was shot accidentally by another warder on a watch-tower. Ryan was hanged anyway. Later, in subsequent re-examinations of the case, many prominent Australians came to a similar conclusion as Tatchell, that the “magic bullet” theory that sent Ryan to the gallows was almost certainly flawed.
The following year, 1968, Tatchell began campaigning against the United States's and
Australia's involvement in the Vietnam War, which he believed was a war of aggression in support of a "brutal and corrupt dictatorship in Saigon which was notorious for the torture and execution of political opponents". From 1970 he was a member of the committee of the Vietnam Moratorium Campaign; he also founded the inter-denominational anti-wargroup Christians for Peace and was elected its secretary, aged 18.Facts|date=February 2008 The Victorian state government and right-wing city councilattempted to suppress the anti-Vietnam War campaign by banning street leafleting and taking police actionagainst anti-war demonstrations.
Gay Liberation Front
conscriptionled him to move to Londonin 1971. He had discovered his homosexualityin 1969, and four days after arriving he spotted a sticker on a lamp-post in Oxford Streetadvertising a meeting of the London Gay Liberation Front(GLF). He quickly became a leading member of the group until it disintegrated in 1974. During his time in GLF Tatchell was prominent in organising sit-ins at pubs that refused to serve “poofs”, and protests against police harassment and the medical classificationof homosexuality as an illness.
In 1973, under the aegis of the GLF, he attended the 10th
World Youth Festivalin East Berlin. His interventions brought out considerable opposition to gay rights within and between different groups of national delegates, including the British Communist Party and National Union of Students, which manifested itself in Tatchell being banned from conferences, having his gay rights leaflets confiscated and burned, interrogation by the secret police, the Stasi, and him being threatened and violently attacked by fellow delegates - mostly communists. Tatchell later claimed that this was the first time gay liberation politics were publicly disseminated and discussed in a communist country, although he noted that legally, in terms of decriminalisation and the age of consent, gay men had greater rights in East Germanyat the time than in Britain and much of the West.Peter Tatchell, "GLF at the World Youth Festival, GDR 1973", in "Gay Marxist" no 3 (October 1973)] At the GLF disruption of the " Christian fundamentalist" Festival of Light rally at Methodist Central Hall, he was part of GLF's Youth Group which staged a kiss-in in the upper balcony in response to a statement from keynote speaker, Malcolm Muggeridge, that he did not like homosexuals.
After doing his
A levelsat evening classes at West LondonCollege, 1972-74, Tatchell continued his education at the Polytechnic of North London. On his graduation with a 2:1 B.Sc. (Hons) in Sociology, he became, and remains, the first and only member of his Tatchell family to have ever secured a degree. At UNL / PNL he was a member of the National Union of StudentsGay Rights Campaign. On graduating he became a freelance journalistspecialising in foreign stories, during which he exposed scandals including the child labouron British-owned tea farms in Malawi."Britain's profitable brew", "New Statesman", July 20, 1979, p. 88-89]
He popularised the phrase "sexual apartheid" to described the separate, different laws that long existed for gays and heterosexuals.Facts|date=February 2008
He has opposed the
Miss Worldcontest on the grounds that it demeans women, and sees female emancipation as one of the most important struggles for true human liberation.Facts|date=February 2008 In January 2005 he was first included in "Who's Who".
The appointment of
Ruth Kellyas Secretary of State for Communities and Local Governmentin 2006 led to controversy, as the Department had responsibility for equalities while Kelly, a practising Roman Catholic, had not supported equal treatment of lesbians and gay men in any Parliamentary votes. Tatchell complained that "her appointment suggests the government does not take lesbian and gay rights seriously", adding "Tony Blair would never appoint someone to a race-equality post who had a lukewarm record of opposing racism". [http://www.pinknews.co.uk/news/politics/2005-1410.html Pinknews.co.uk article] ]
Timeline of political events
Simple timeline|event-title=Political Event
1970|Founded the inter-denominational anti-war group Christians for Peace and elected secretaryFacts|date=February 2008
1978|Became a member of the Labour Party
1980|Elected secretary of
Constituency Labour Party
1981|Selected as successor to Labour MP, Bob Mellish for Bermondsey
1983|Lost Bermondsey by-election to
1989|Founding member of [AIDS Coalition to Unleash Power - Act Up London]
1990|One of the founders of
Glenda Jacksonfor Labour nomination for Hampstead and Highgate
2000|Leaves the Labour Party
2004|Became a member of the Green Party [cite web |url=http://london.greenparty.org.uk/news/359 |title=Greens launch manifesto for a gay-friendly London |publisher=
2007|Selected as Green Party candidate for Oxford Eastcite web|url=http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk_politics/6587311.stm|title=Tatchell to stand for Green Party|publisher=
Labour candidate for Bermondsey
A 1973 attempt to join the Labour Party got no response. His later application to join the Labour Party was accepted in
Hornseyin 1978, shortly before he moved to a hard-to-let council flat on the Rockingham Estate in Bermondsey, south-east London.
From October 1979, Tatchell became a leading member in a group of left-wingers who began planning to depose the right-wing caucus of Southwark borough councillors who were in control of Bermondsey
Constituency Labour Party. Similar moves were occurring in many other Constituency Labour Parties as part of a shift to the left following the party's defeat in the 1979 general election. At the Annual General Meeting of the CLP in February 1980, the left group won control and Tatchell was elected as the CLP Secretary.
When the sitting Labour MP, Bob Mellish, announced his retirement, Tatchell was selected as his successor in November 1981. The selection was something of a surprise, as
Arthur Latham(defeated in 1979 at Paddington by 106 votes, and former Chairman of the Tribune Group) was expected to be selected (Tatchell defeated him by 37 to 30). Later the Militant tendencywere cited as the reason for Tatchell's selection, but as Tatchell pointed out in his book "The Battle for Bermondsey", they had at that time only a handful of members in the constituency, Tatchell had never been a member and Militant did not support his selection. The Militant group were in any case hostile to gay rights issues until the battle over Section 28several years later. Tatchell ascribed his selection as Labour candidate as due to the support of the "older, 'born and bred' working class; the younger professional and intellectual members swung behind Latham".Peter Tatchell, "The Battle for Bermondsey" (Heretic Books, 1983), p. 50]
Tatchell had written an article for the left-wing magazine "
London Labour Briefing" in which he urged the Labour Party to support innovative direct actionpolitical campaigning to challenge the excesses of the Thatcher regime. ["London Labour Briefing", November 1981.] The article came to the attention of James Wellbeloved, a former Labour MP who had joined the Social Democratic Party. Wellbeloved, arguing it was anti-Parliamentary, used it at Prime Minister's Question Time in December 1981 to embarrass Labour leader Michael Foot. Unexpectedly, Foot denounced Tatchell, stating that he would not be endorsed as a candidate. Foot narrowly won a vote at the Labour Party National Executive Committeeto refuse endorsement to Tatchell.
BermondseyLabour Party continued strongly to support him, and Tatchell worked on convincing Foot that his article was in the tradition of the Chartists and the Suffragettes, and had been misinterpreted by Labour's political opponents. It was eventually agreed that when the selection was rerun, Tatchell would be eligible, and he duly won. When Mellish resigned from Parliament and triggered a by-election, Tatchell was endorsed as the Labour Party candidate.
The divisions in the Labour Party which Tatchell's far-Left views had caused, and his presumed
homosexuality, Tatchell was still closetedat this point, were used against him by many opponents, in an election campaign which was widely regarded as one of the dirtiest and most violent in modern British history. Four far-right candidates stood against Tatchell. Racist, homophobic and red-baiting anti-Tatchell graffiti was daubed throughout the constituency. Some electors who displayed "Vote Tatchell" posters had their windows smashed by neo-Nazis. Tatchell was assaulted in the street, had his flat attacked, and at one stage had a death threat and a live bullet put through his front door letterbox in the middle of the night. Although the Bermondseyseat had long been a Labour stronghold, the Liberal candidate, Simon Hughes, won the election. During the campaign, allegations were made that some Liberal canvassers stirred up xenophobia and homophobia on the doorsteps, playing up the fact that Tatchell was a foreigner born in Australia, and making an issue of his homosexuality. Members of the Liberal Gay Action Group campaigned wearing lapel badges emblazoned with the words, "I've been kissed by Peter Tatchell" as a protest against the perception that he was attempting to hide his sexuality (see ) in 2006.
In the mid- and late-1980s, Tatchell worked as an author, writing books including "
The Battle for Bermondsey" (the story of the by-election), "Democratic Defence" and a ground-breaking guide to surviving with HIVand AIDS, "AIDS: A Guide to Survival". His book "Europe in the Pink" gave an introduction to the different laws on homosexuality through the European Union. In 1990 Tatchell sought (unsuccessfully) the Labour nomination for Hampstead and Highgate, being defeated by actress Glenda Jackson.
In February 2000 he resigned his membership of the Labour Party, citing its treatment of
Ken Livingstone, and in support of Livingstone he fought unsuccessfully for a seat on the London Assemblyas an Independent Green Left candidate. On 7 April 2004, Tatchell announced that he had joined the Green Party but that he did not envisage standing as a candidate in any future election. However, in 2007, he was selected as the party's candidate for Oxford East.
Tatchell opposes expanding
nuclear powerin Britain and worldwide; instead he supports concentrated solar power. In his column in "Tribune", he pointed out the adverse effects of climate changeboth at home in England and worldwide: "By 2050, if climate change proceeds unchecked, England will no longer be a green and pleasant land. In between periods of prolonged scorching drought, we are likely to suffer widespread flooding." "Unless swift remedial action is taken, climate chaos will devastate large parts of the world. The poorest countries, with the least wealth and resources to cope, will be hit the hardest."
For many years, he supported a
green-red alliance. In particular, he helped launch the Green Left grouping within the Green Party. He also urged for the formation of co-operation and links between trade unions and the Greens.
The Iraq War
Tatchell opposed the
Iraq warand the occupation of Iraq by the United States. For nearly three decades he supported the Iraqi Left Opposition. He supported helping them remove the government of Saddam Husseinby force because of the gross violations of human rights Saddam had committed against democrats, left-wingers, trade unionists, Shia Muslims and the Kurdish people, and because under Saddam's dictatorship there were no opportunities for peaceful, democratic change. He advocated military and financial aid to opponents of the Saddam government in order to assist them to overthrow it; specifically suggesting that anti-Saddam organisations be given "tanks, helicopter gun-ships, fighter planes, heavy artillery and anti-tank and anti-aircraft missiles". [http://www.guardian.co.uk/Iraq/Story/0,,917435,00.html Iraq: the third way] - Peter Tatchell in The Guardian. 19 March 2003] He suggested that "A democratic Iraq would be a beacon for human rights throughout the Middle East; giving the Arab peopletheir first taste of freedom in a region that is dominated by semi-feudal Islamic fundamentalist dictatorships, notorious for their brutality, nepotismand corruption." [http://www.petertatchell.net/international/antiwar.htm ANTI-WAR MOVEMENT IGNORES SADDAM'S CRIMES] - petertatchell.net. 30 September 2002] While opposing western intervention, he further advocated " regime changefrom within, by and for the people, in neighbouring tyrannies such as Saudi Arabia, Iranand Syria." Writing in the " New Statesman", Tatchell reported that on March 12, 2003he ambushed Tony Blair's motorcade in an anti-Iraq war protest. He forced the PM's limousine to stop, and then unfolded a banner which read "Arm the Kurds! Topple Saddam". Footage of his ambush was shown on ITNNews the same evening. Later in his "New Statesman" article he wrote that in terms of the political struggle within Britain (as opposed to struggles against absolute tyrants like Hitler and Saddam where violent resistance can be the lesser of two evils): "I remain committed to the Gandhian principle of non-violence". [ [http://www.newstatesman.com/200303240002 Diary - Peter Tatchell] - New Statesman, 24 March 2003.] Since the war he has signed the 'Unite Against Terror' declaration, arguing that "the "pseudo-left" reveals its shameless hypocrisy and its wholesale abandonment of humanitarian values" by supporting resistance and insurgent groups in Iraq that resort to indiscriminate terrorism, killing innocent civilians. In 2002 he reiterated his support for Iraqis bidding to overthrow Saddam, noting that "Saddam’s repression is, if anything, getting worse. In November 2001, the death penalty was extended to include the offences of prostitution, homosexuality, incest and rape." Despite the introduction of the death penalty, many gay Iraqis say they rarely faced overt persecution during Saddam's time. This led Tatchell to write in 2006 that "Under Saddam Hussein discreet homosexuality was usually tolerated."
In 2003 Tatchell wrote in "The Guardian" that he supported giving "massive material aid" to Iraqi opposition groups, including the "Shi'ite
Supreme Council for Islamic Revolution in Iraq" so as to bring the downfall of Saddam. But in 2006 Tatchell noted that SCIRI had become markedly more fundamentalist and was endorsing violent attacks an anyone who did not conform to its increasingly harsh interpretation of Islam. He claimed that the "the Supreme Council for Islamic Revolution in Iraq (SCIRI), which is the leading political force in Baghdad’s ruling coalition [wants] to establish an Iranian-style religious dictatorship.. [has a] goal of clerical fascism" and has engaged in "terrorisation of gay Iraqis", as well as terrorising Sunni Muslims, left-wingers, unveiled women, and people who listen to western pop musicor who wear jeans or shorts. In 2006, he raised his concern for the Baloch people, who are facing military operations in their homeland Balochistanin Pakistan. [cite web
title=Pakistan's secret war in Baluchistan
Gay rights in Moscow
In May 2007, Peter Tatchell went to
Moscow, Russia, to support Moscow Prideand to voice his opposition to a city-wide ban on the planned gay pridemarch. He went there at the invitation of Russian LGBT activists. On May 27, 2007Tatchell and other gay rights activists were attacked by religious conservatives, neo-nazis and fascists. Tatchell was punched in the face and nearly knocked unconscious, while other demonstrators were beaten, kicked, and assaulted.cite web |url=http://www.cnn.com/2007/WORLD/europe/05/27/russia.gayrights.reut/index.html |title=cnn.com |accessdate=2007-06-18 |publisher=] . A German MP, Volker Beck, and a European Parliament deputy from Italy, Marco Capatto, were similarly subjected to punches before being arrested and questioned by police. [cite newspaper|title=Gay activists beaten up at Moscow demo|publisher=The Independent|date=2007-05-28|author=Rachel Shields] Tatchell later said "I'm not deterred one iota from coming back to protest in Moscow."cite web |url=http://pinknews.co.uk/news/articles/2005-4499.html |title=pinknews.co.uk |accessdate=2007-06-18 |publisher=]
Increasingly Tatchell took part in
gay rightscampaigning over issues such as Section 28. Following the murder of actor Michael Bootheon 10 May 1990, Tatchell was one of thirty founding members of the radical queer rights non-violent direct action group OutRage!and has remained a leading member. The group fuses theatrical performance styles with queerpolitical protest. As the most prominent OutRage! member, Tatchell is frequently taken to be the leader of the group, but he has never claimed this title and rejects it, saying he is one among equals. Indeed, the few histories of the group published demonstrate that he is not described by himself or by other group members as the leader. [See, e.g., Ian Lucas, "OutRage! - an oral history", Cassell 1998.]
In 1991, a small group of OutRage! members covertly formed a separate group to engage in a campaign of 'outing' public figures who were homophobic in public but homosexual in private. The group took the name 'FROCS' (Faggots Rooting Out Closeted Sexuality) and Tatchell agreed to act as the group's go-between with the press, forwarding their news statements to his extensive media contacts. Considerable publicity and public debate followed FROCS's threat to out 200 leading public personalities from the world of politics, religion, business and sport. With Tatchell's assistance, members of FROCS eventually called a press conference to tell the world that their campaign was a hoax intended to demonstrate the hypocrisy of those newspapers which had condemned their campaign despite having themselves outed celebrities and politicians.Ian Lucas, "OutRage! - an oral history", Cassell 1998, pp. 63-71]
Some of the activities of
OutRage!have been highly controversial. In 1994 it unveiled placards inviting ten Church of England bishops to "tell the truth" about their homosexuality; accusing them of condemning gay sexuality in public while themselves leading secret gay lives. It was their hypocrisy and homophobia that prompted them being targeted. Shortly afterwards the group wrote to twenty closeted homophobic UK MPs, condemning their support for anti-gay laws and threatening to out them if they did not stop attacking the gay communityand voting for discriminatory legislation. The MP Sir James Kilfedder, one such opponent of gay equality, [http://www.scotsgay.co.uk/text/sg3.txt] who had received one of the letters, [cite web
title=OutRage!: an oral history – Book Review
first=Ian] died two months later of a sudden heart attack on the day one of the
Belfastnewspapers planned to out him.Fact|date=September 2007 In a comment in " The Independent" in October 2003, Tatchell identified the OutRage! action against the bishops as his greatest mistake because he under-estimated how it would be misrepresented by the media and the church (as an invasion of privacy, rather than as an exposure of homophobic and hypocritical bishops). He admits it allowed an important campaign against the Anglican Church's opposition to gay human rights to be derailed by putting the focus on OutRage!'s actions.
Jurisdiction Act 1860 (formerly part of the Brawling Act 1551) which prohibits any form of disruption or protest in a church. Tatchell was thwarted in his attempt to summon Carey as a witness and was convicted, but the judge fined him only the token amount of £18.60, which most commentators assumed was a wry allusion to the year of the statute used to convict him.
Some in the
LGBTpress have dubbed him "Saint Peter Tatchell" following further OutRage!campaigns involving religion,cite web
title=Examining the treatment of sexuality in the Scottish media
publisher=Scottish Media Monitor
first=Garry] and the
Sisters of Perpetual Indulgenceinducted him as one of their "Saints" in the mid-1990s. OutRage!protested against the ban on same-sex marriageon the occasion of the wedding between Prince Charlesand Camilla Parker Bowles. Tatchell was detained by the police under the Terrorism Actafter displaying a banner reading "Charles can marry twice! Gays can't marry once."
In 1996 Tatchell led an OutRage! campaign to reduce the age of consent to 14 to adjust for studies which showed nearly half of all young people - gay and straight - had their first sexual experiences prior to 16 years old and to counter them from being "treated as criminals by the law". [http://www.petertatchell.net/age%20of%20consent/consent%20at%2014.htm CONSENT AT 14 ] ] The campaign positioned there should be no prosecution at all if the difference between the ages of the
sexual partners was no more than three years - and providing it is backed up by earlier, more effective sex educationin schools. He was quoted in the OutRage! press release as saying "Young people have a right to accept or reject sex, according to what they feel is appropriate for them".OutRage! press release, February 21 1996] Leo McKinstry, in "The Sun" called it "a perverts' charter".Leo McKinstry, "Gays Homing In on Kids", The Sun, February 24 1996] Tatchell in the " Irish Independent" on 10 March 2008repeated his call for a lower age of consent to end the criminalisation of young people engaged in consenting sex and to remove the legal obstacles to upfront sex education, condom provision and safer sex advice. In the early 1990s, he supported a relaxation in the then strict laws against pornography, arguing that porn can have some social benefits, and he has criticised the body-shame phobia against nudism, suggesting that nudity is natural and may even be healthy for society. This was in keeping with explicit safer-sexmaterials including two books Tatchell later wrote on the subject.
Part of Tatchell's political activism and journalism in the 1970s had involved the
Second Chimurengain Rhodesia, in which he had supported the black liberation struggle, including the Zimbabwe African National Unionand its military wing. However, Robert Mugabe's denunciation of male homosexuality in 1995 led him to help organise a protest by Gays and Lesbians outside the Zimbabwe High Commission in London. Two years later, he managed to sneak through police security disguised as a TV camerman to quiz Mugabe during the "Africa at 40" conference at Central Hall, Westminster. Mugabe thanked him for his support for the liberation struggle and told him that allegations of human rights abuses were grossly exaggerated. But he became agitated when Tatchell told him that he was gay. Mugabe's minders summoned Special Branchguards who ejected Tatchell from the building. On October 26, 1997a letter from Tatchell to " The Guardian" argued that the United Kingdom should suspend aid to Zimbabwe because of its persecution of homosexuals.
At this point, Tatchell researched Mugabe's
Gukurahundiattacks in Matabelelandin the 1980s when Mugabe had sent the Fifth Brigade of the Zimbabwe army against supporters of the Zimbabwe African Peoples Union. He became convinced that Mugabe had broken international human rights lawduring the attack, which is estimated to have involved the massacre of around 20,000 civilians. Then in 1999, two opposition journalists (Mark Chavunduka and Ray Choto) were tortured by the Zimbabwe Army. The arrest in London of Augusto Pinochetseemed to him a precedent that human rights violations could be pursued against a head of state. On October 30, 1999Tatchell and three other OutRage! activists ambushed Mugabe's car in a London street and attempted to perform a citizen's arrest. Tatchell opened the car door and seized Mugabe. He then called the police. Instead of Mugabe being arrested, all four OutRage! activists were arrested, on charges including criminal damage, assault and breach of the peace; these charges were dropped on the opening day of their trial. Mugabe responded by describing Tatchell and his OutRage! colleagues as "gay gangsters", a slogan frequently repeated by his supporters, and claimed they had been sent by the United Kingdom government.cite web|url=http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_qn4158/is_19991106/ai_n14268526
title=Gays seeking sexual asylum in South Africa
The Independentreproduced by findarticles.com
In 2001 Tatchell received a tip-off about a visit by Mugabe to
Belgium. He travelled to Brussels, and in the lobby of the Brussels Hilton attempted a second citizen's arrest on March 5. This time, Mugabe's large corps of bodyguards pushed him away roughly and were seen punching him to the floor. In the third attack on him by Mugabe's bodyguards that day, which took place on the forecourt of the Hilton hotel, Tatchell was briefly knocked unconscious and was left with permanent damage to his right eye. The protest drew world-wide headlines, as Mugabe was, by then, highly unpopular in the Western worldfor his government's land grab policy which involved the violent seizure of farms owned by white people and by black independent farmers (especially those who were not supporters of Mugabe's ZANU-PF party). Although billed as a land reformprogramme, landless people got very little of the land. Most of the seized farms were handed to Mugabe's party, government and military cronies. Tatchell's actions were praised by many of the newspapers that had previously denounced him, and by many black Zimbabwean democracy, trade union, student and church activists. [cite web
title=Peter Tatchall: 'There may be a case for the people of Zimbabwe to kill Robert Mugabe'
Tatchell subsequently bought a
legal caseagainst Mugabe in Bow Street Magistrates' Court, in which he attempted to secure an international arrest warrantagainst the Zimbabwean dictator on charges of torture. The magistrate rejected the application, arguing that Mugabe had immunity from prosecution as a serving head of state.
In late 2003 Tatchell acted as a press spokesman for the launch of the
Zimbabwe Freedom Movementwhich claimed to be a clandestine group within Zimbabwecommitted to overthrowing the government of Robert Mugabe by force. The civic action support group Sokwaneleurged Tatchell to check his sources with the group, speculating that it may be an invention of supporters of the Zimbabwe government in order to justify violent action against its opponents. [http://www.sokwanele.com/articles/sokwanele/whoandwhatisthezimfreedommovement_ 13 November 2003.html Who and What is the “Zimbabwe Freedom Movement”?] ] This speculation proved to be unfounded. The ZFM was not used as a pretext for violent suppression. Indeed, the Mugabe regime dismissed the ZFM as a "hoax." However, two Central Intelligence Organizationmembers were spotted and turned away from the ZFM launch, as shown in the film "Peter Tatchell: Just who does he think he is?" by Max Barber.
Tatchell has called for the enforcement of the laws against incitement to violence and murder, and has organised protests outside the concerts of singers whose lyrics urge the killing of queers. A long-running target of his criticism has been
reggaeartists whose lyrics encourage and glorify violence, including murder, of lesbians and gay men. Tatchell's campaign began in the early 1990s when Buju Banton's song "Boom bye-bye" was released and has continued to date. Banton's song urges listeners to shoot gay men in the head. He has picketed the MOBO Awardsceremony to protest at their inviting performers of what he terms "murder music". [http://www.outrage.org.uk/Tatchell-reggaesingers.asp outrage.org.uk] ] Tatchell received death threats and was labelled a racist. Tatchell defended himself by noting that the campaign was at the behest of the Jamaican gay rights group J-Flag, and the UK-based Black Gay Mens Advisory Group, with which he works closely. He also pointed to a life's work campaigning against racism and apartheid, and stated that his campaigns against " murder music" and state-sanctioned homophobic violence in Jamaicawere endorsed by black Jamaican gay rights activists, and by many straight human rights activists in Jamaica (people (Homosexuality is illegal in Jamaica due to the country's highly conservative government, see LGBT rights in Jamaica).
Tatchell has also campaigned against the homophobia and racism of Guns n Roses and
Marky Mark; as well as the rapper Eminem, commenting that "it's not hard to imagine Eminem as a woman-hating, self-loathing, repressed gay man" on the basis of his appearance and "obsession" with gay sex. [http://www.petertatchell.net/popmusic/iseminemqueer.htm PeterTatchell.net] - Is Eminem Queer?] In December 2005, UK singer Robbie Williamswon £200,000 damagesfrom " The People" newspaper and the magazines "Star" and "Hot Stars" after they published false claims that he was secretly homosexual. Tatchell commented publicly that " [Williams'] legal action has created the impression he thinks it is shameful to be gay". [http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/entertainment/4513430.stm BBC News: Williams 'should donate damages' (2005-12-05)] ]
Tatchell condemned what he saw as double standards regarding racist and homophobic language employed by the the BBC Radio 1 censoring of the
Pogues' 1987 Christmas hit "Fairytale".cquote|The word faggot is being sung as an insult, alongside scumbag and maggot. In this abusive context it is unacceptable. It is shameful that BBC Radio 2and other radio and TV stations are continuing to play the full version with the word faggot included. It shows that they don't take homophobic language as seriously as racist language. [http://newsvote.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/entertainment/7149525.stm?dynamic_vote=ON#vote_pogues BBC's radio 1 censoring of the Pogues (2007-12-18)] ] Radio 1 subsequently backed down on the "Pogues row", and said they would allow the Pogues' Fairytale of New York to be played on the station uncut, after widespread criticism of the decision to censor it. [http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/entertainment/7150693.stm Radio 1 backdown on censorship (2007-12-18)] ]
While still at school, Tatchell campaigned in favour of better treatment of, and full human rights for, the Aboriginal people of Australia.(Tatchell, 1983) p.13] He believes that Australian cities should be renamed with their original Aboriginal place names, to sever ties with the colonial era, which resulted in the decimation of the Aboriginal population. For example, he wants the
Tasmanian capital Hobartto be renamed Nibberluna, arguing that this would be a fitting tribute to Australia's Aboriginal heritage which has been discarded and disrespected for too long. [http://www.newstatesman.com/World/200404190006 New Statesman article] from 2004]
His anti-imperialist activism began in 1968 and involved campaigns against the war in Vietnam. He participated in the mass Vietnam Moratorium protests in his home
city of Melbournein 1970. The same year he founded and was elected secretary of the inter-denominational anti-war movement, Christians for Peace. Later, on moving to London in 1971, he was active in solidarity work with the freedom struggles in Mozambique, Angola, Guinea Bissau, Namibia, Eritrea, Oman, New Hebrides, Western Sahara, Palestine, East Timorand West Papua. From the early 1970s he was also involved in campaigns against the dictatorships in the Soviet Union, East Germany, Indonesia, Spain, Portugal, Greece, Philippines, Iraq, Iran, Nicaragua, El Salvadorand Chile. He is currently active in solidarity campaigns for democracy and human rights in Darfur, Western Sahara, Palestine, Iran, Somaliland, Iraq, West Papua, Zimbabwe, Baluchistan, Pakistan, Ugandaand against the persecution of Iran’s Arab minority (see The Times 10 October 2006).
anti-apartheidactivist (from 1969), his lobbying of the ANCin 1987 contributed to it renouncing homophobia and making its first public commitment to lesbian and gay human rights. Later, in 1989 and 1990, he helped persuade the ANC to include a ban on anti-gay discrimination in the post-apartheid constitution (he assisted in drafting model clauses for the ANC). [cite web |url=http://www.petertatchell.net/history/anc.htm |title=The moment the ANC embraced gay rights |accessdate=2008-08-17|last=Tatchell |first=Peter|publisher=www.petertatchell.net] See: Sex and Politics in South Africa (Double Storey Books, Cape Town, 2005, pp 140 - 149).
In 2002, he brought an unsuccessful legal action in the British courts for the arrest of the former US Secretary of State,
Henry Kissinger, on charges of war crimes in Vietnam and Cambodia. [cite web |url=http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk/2002/apr/24/6 |title=Kissinger: mistakes may have been made |accessdate=2008-08-17|date=2002-04-24|publisher= guardian.co.uk]
Allegations of racism
In the 1970s and 1980s Tatchell was involved in anti-fascist campaigns, first against the
National Frontand later, after its formation, against the British National Party. He campaigned with Rock Against Racismand the Anti-Nazi League, and was involved in the anti-apartheid movement from 1969 until the end of the white minority regime in 1990; being a regular protester and speaker at the 24/7 non-stop, four-year-long picket outside South Africa House.
OutRage!'s protest against
Chief Rabbi Immanuel Jakobovits, who supported the idea of eugenicsto eliminate homosexuality,"If we could by some form of genetic engineeringeliminate these trends, we should - so long as it is done for a therapeutic purpose" - letter to the "Jewish Chronicle", July 16 1993] led to accusations that Tatchell was being anti-semitic. OutRage! leaflets citing the similarity of Jakobovits ideas for the eradication of homosexuality to those of Heinrich Himmlerwere distributed outside the Western and Marble ArchSynagogue on the Jewish New Year in September 1993. Rabbi Julia Neuberger, who had campaigned for gay rights, said "Drawing a comparison between Lord Jakobovits and Himmler is offensive, racist and ... makes OutRage appear anti-Semitic". She stated that the action and leaflet would "alienate Jews who are sympathetic to gay rights".Jason Bennetto, "Is this comparison odious?", "The Independent", October 31 1993]
For nearly four decades, Tatchell has opposed Israel's presence in
Gazaand the West Bank. He has campaigned for Palestinian human rights and in support of an independent Palestinian state. In May 2004, he and a dozen other OutRage! members, including gay Arabs and Muslims, joined a London demonstration organised by the Palestine Solidarity Campaign. Their placards read "Israel: stop persecuting Palestine! Palestine: stop persecuting queers!" (the latter a reference to the arrest, jailing and torture of homosexuals by the Palestinian authorities). The OutRage! presence was greeted with hostility by some other demonstrators, and Tatchell claims they accused him of being a Mossad agent sent to disrupt the march, of being a racist or a Zionist, a supporter of Ariel Sharon, or an agent of the Central Intelligence Agencyor MI5. [http://www.petertatchell.net/international/palestine.htm Gays attacked at Palestinian Rights Protest] (Peter Tatchell press release)]
In the early 1970s, he was one of the first people to propose international boycotts and sanctions against Israel over its occupation of Gaza and the West Bank. He was a founding member of the Palestine Solidarity Campaign, and a keynote speaker (with Ken Livingstone and
Ted Knight) at the Palestinian campaign launch at the GLC headquarters, County Hall, in 1982.Facts|date=February 2008
In April 2008, Tatchell attempted to disrupt the procession of the Olympic torch though London. As a protest against China's human rights record he stood in front of the bus carrying the torch along Oxford Street while carrying a placard calling on Beijing to "Free Tibet, Free Hu Jia" (the name of a recently jailed human rights activist). Tatchell was taken away by police but was not charged.Scott Anthony [http://sport.guardian.co.uk/news/story/0,,2271457,00.html?gusrc=rss&feed=networkfront "Police forced to call in reinforcements as protesters disrupt Olympic torch relay",] "The Guardian", 6 April 2008. Retrieved on 4 September 2008.] In an interview Tatchell called on the world to boycott the opening ceremony of the Olympics, or to take other visible action.
Anglican and Catholic
Tatchell reserves some of his most serious invective for Pope
Benedict XVI, whom he describes as, "the ideological inheritor of Nazi homophobia". He has also said that, "it's very sad to see a good man like the Archbishop of Canterbury, Rowan Williams, going to such extraordinary lengths to appease homophobes within the AnglicanCommunion". [Irish Times, p 17, 25 July 2008]
Regarding Islam and Muslims
Tatchell's criticism of Muslim fundamentalists has been interpreted by some on the far left as a "product of
Islamophobia",Acknowledged in the subheading of his article "An embrace that shames London", "New Statesman", January 24 2005: Tatchell "finds himself accused of Islamophobia.. ". See also [http://www.islamophobia-watch.com islamophobia-watch.com] ] although Tatchell has condemned Islamophobia in his writings, saying "Any form of prejudice, hatred, discrimination or violence against muslims is wrong. Full stop" [http://www.cpgb.org.uk/worker/544/tatchell.htm "Criticising the oppressed"] , Weekly Workerarticle, issue 544, Thursday September 16 2004] , and has described the Qur'anas "rather mild in its condemnation of homosexuality" [http://commentisfree.guardian.co.uk/peter_tatchell/2006/10/muslim_hypocrisy_on_free_speec.html "Respect is a two-way street"] Guardian "Comment is Free" article (as commenter)] .
Tatchell also points out that much of his prison and asylum casework involves supporting Muslim prisoners and asylum seekers - heterosexual, as well as homosexual. In 2006, he helped stop the abuse of Muslim prisoners at Norwich jail, and he has helped secure parole for other Muslim detainees. Half his asylum cases are, he reports, male and female Muslim refugees. Two of his highest profile campaigns have involved Muslim victims of injustice - Mohamed S who was framed by men who tried to kill him and jailed for eight years, and Sid Saeed who bought a racist and homophobic harassment case against Deutsche Bank.
Tatchell has described Sharia law as "a clerical form of fascism" [http://www.islamophobia-watch.com/islamophobia-watch/2006/3/18/alliance-with-bigots-wont-halt-fascists.html Article] ] on the grounds that it opposes democracy and human rights, especially for women and gay people. He was the keynote speaker at a 2005 protest at the Canadian High Commission over
Ontario's arbitration law, which already permitted religious arbitration in civil cases for Jews and Christians, being extended to Muslims. Tatchell argued there should be no separate systems of arbitration for any religion. [http://outrage.nabumedia.com/pressrelease.asp?ID=310 OutRage! press release] ] In 1995 he wrote that "although not all Muslims are anti-gay, significant numbers are violently homophobic.. homophobic Muslim voters may be able to influence the outcome of elections in 20 or more marginal constituencies."cite web
title=Islamic Fundamentalism In Britain
Tatchell describes the umbrella group
Muslim Council of Britainas "anti-gay", [http://www.indymedia.org.uk/en/2006/02/333630.html Indymedia article] ] asking how "they expect to win respect for their community, if at the same time as demanding action against Islamophobia, they themselves demand the legal enforcement of homophobia?". [http://www.cpgb.org.uk/worker/544/tatchell.htm Weekly Worker article] ] He noted that the MCB had joined forces with right-wing Christian fundamentalists to oppose every gay law reformfrom 1997 to 2006. The opposition of MCB Chairman Sir Iqbal Sacranieto homosexuality and registration of civil partnerships led Tatchell to observe "Both the Muslim and gay communities suffer prejudice and discrimination. We should stand together to fight Islamophobia and homophobia". [http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/4579146.stm BBC News online] ] Tatchell subsequently criticised Unite Against Fascismfor inviting Sacranie to share its platforms, describing him as a bigot and a "homophobic hate-mongerer."cite web
title=Battered, bruised and betrayed
first=Peter] This was in response to Sacranie's denunciation of gay people as immoral, harmful and diseased on BBC Radio 4. When the MCB boycotted
Holocaust Memorial Day, partly because it included a commemoration of the gay victims of Nazism, Tatchell wrote that "the only thing that is consistent about the MCB is its opposition to the human rights of lesbians and gay men".cite web
A colleague of Tatchell's, the Islamic theologian, Dr
Muhammad Yusuf(research fellow with Interfaith Alliance UK) withdrew from a planned lecture on "an Islamic reformation that reconciles Islam with democracy and human rights, including human rights for women and gay people" after he received threats from Islamist fundamentalists. Dr Yusuf said that "senior Islamic clerics" told him they could not guarantee his safety if he went ahead. [http://www.pinknews.co.uk/news/articles/2005-864.html Pink News] ] The lecture was to raise funds for the Peter Tatchell Human Rights Fund.
Malcolm Xas his specialised subject when appearing on "Celebrity Mastermind", explaining that he considered him an inspiration and hero (his other inspirations are Mahatma Gandhi, Sylvia Pankhurstand Martin Luther King). However, his endorsement of Bruce Perry's biography in an article calling for black gay role modelscite web
title=Malcolm X - gay black hero?
first=Tatchell] has led to criticismPeter Akinti, the editor of
Black In Britain, described the claim of homosexuality as "shocking" and "inappropriate",cite web
title=Malcolm X insulted
first=Peter] due to Perry's claim that Malcolm X had male lovers in his youth.
Following the hanging of two teenage boys, Mahmoud Asgari and Ayaz Marhoni by Iranian authorities, Tatchell reiterated his long-standing view that the Islamic Republic of
Iranis an "Islamo-fascist state". Tatchell insists the two youths appear to have been hanged merely for being gay. He bases this opinion on information from gay activists inside Iran and from gay friends of the hanged youths who were with them at a secret gay party before they were arrested. The Iranian government and state-licensed media claim the youths were guilty of rape of a 13 year old boy at knifepoint. Tatchell observes that trumped up charges are routine in Iran. Left-wing political oppositionists are, for example, often had up on false charges such as spying, adultery, drug taking, sodomy and alcoholism. No claims by the Iranian government or judiciary should ever be taken at face value, he says. International human rights groups Amnesty Internationaland Human Rights Watchpreferred campaigners to focus on the propriety of hanging two teenagers rather than the disputed connection to gay sex. [http://www.thenation.com/doc/20050815/kim The Nation] ] Faisal Alam, founder of American Gay Muslim group "Al-Fatiha", argued in the magazine "Queer" that Iran was condemned before the facts were certain, [http://www.indymedia.org.uk/en/2005/09/322759.html Indymedia article] ] and in 2003 the United Nations Committee Against Torturenoted that "from different and reliable sources that there currently is no active policy of prosecution of charges of homosexuality in Iran." [http://www.hri.ca/fortherecord2003/documentation/tbodies/cat-c-30-d-190-2001.htm Decisions of the Committee Against Torture] - Article 7. 4 May- 26 May 2003] . This is disputed by Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch and the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission. They confirm that the death penalty exists for homosexuality in Iran and that gay and lesbian people suffer persecution, including arrest, torture, imprisonment and execution by slow strangulation. This is corroborated by the Iranian Queer Rights Organisation (formerly the Persian Gay and Lesbian Organisation), most of whose members are based inside Iran and regularly provide reports of homophobic beatings, torture and imprisonment by state agents.
Jyllands-Posten Muhammad cartoons controversy, Tatchell spoke at an event whose organisers termed a "Rally for free expression" defending the publication of cartoons of the Islamic prophet Muhammad, and in support for free speech in general. [http://www.metroweekly.com/feature/?ak=2076 Gays in Eurabia - Muslim immigrants to Europe are threatening the rights of gays, women and free speech] - April 20 2006.] Tatchell had expected "thousands" to attend the event, which was held on March 25 2006, but police estimated only 250 people attended. [http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/england/london/4844634.stm Hundreds join free speech rally] - BBC News- Saturday, 25 March 2006]
Tatchell defended his support for the rally: "Some critics are mischievously portraying Saturday's protest as an anti-Muslim rally. I condemn unreservedly any attempt to demonise or scapegoat my Muslim brothers and sisters. I also reject the suggestion of a clash of civilisations. Both fundamentalists and progressives can be found in all faiths, politics, ethnicities and cultures. No society has a monopoly of enlightenment and plurality. Muslim societies like Bangladesh have produced Enlightenment icons like the feminist writer Taslima Nasreen; while supposedly cultured nations like Britain and France have spawned the
Dark Agesignorance of the British National Party and the Front National."
Tatchell's speech at the rally included the following: "As well as challenging religious-inspired tyranny, let us also say loud and clear that we defend Muslim communities against prejudice and discrimination. Let us declare that we deplore the homophobia, race hate, Islamophobia and anti-Semitism of the British National Party."
the Guardianfollowing the release of in the UK, Tatchell criticised Sacha Baron Cohenfor his double standards and ‘self-censorship’, saying "he regards Christians and Jews as fair game, he never gives Muslims the same doing over".
Ken Livingstone's invitation of Yusuf al-Qaradawito address a conference on the wearing of the hijabled to a rift between Livingstone and Tatchell, who described Qaradawi as " rightwing, misogynist, anti-semiticand homophobic" and as someone who claimed to have liberal positions in order to deceive Western politicians. [http://www.newstatesman.com/200501240019 An embrace that shames London] New Statesman - Peter Tatchell - Monday 24 January 2005] Tatchell cites Qaradawi's books and online fatwas where he advocates the execution of apostates (Muslims who turn away from their faith), women who have sex outside of marriage and lesbian and gay people. He notes that Qaradawi also supports female genital mutilation and blames rape victims who dress immodestly. Tatchell highlighted the fact that 2,500 Muslims intellectuals signed an open letterin 2004 which condemned Qaradawi as an apologist for terrorism and human rights abuses. Livingstone issued a dossier in defence of Qaradawi as a moderate, [http://www.london.gov.uk/news/docs/qaradawi_dossier.rtf Mayor's dossier] ] and accused Tatchell of writing about the conference without attending it. [http://www.newstatesman.com/200407190012 New Statesman article] ] The dispute became bitter with Tatchell leading a demonstration against Qaradawi and with Livingstone claiming that Tatchell has "a long history of Islamophobia", and had "constructed a fantasy worldin which the main threat we face, worse than the far right, is Islamic fundamentalist hordes.. [taking] him into a " de facto" alliance with the American neo-cons and Israeli intelligence services who want to present themselves as defending western "civilisation" against more "backward" civilisations in the Middle Eastand elsewhere." [http://www.newstatesman.com/200501240019 An embrace that shames London] New Statesman - Peter Tatchell - Monday 24 January 2005] [ [http://www.whatnextjournal.co.uk/Pages/Politics/Reply.html Tatchell’s Islamic Conspiracy Theory] - What Next journal. Ken Livingstone- February 2005.] These are accusations that Tatchell strenuously denies, pointing out that he has never said any of the things that Livingstone accuses him of saying. Imaan, a gay Muslim organisation, initially supported the campaign against Qaradawi, signing a joint letter to the Mayor Of London with OutRage! and over a dozen other community groups, including the National Union of Students and Hindu, Sikh and Jewish organisations. The letter condemned Livingstone for hosting the Islamic cleric. But later, Imaan stated that it disagreed with Qaradawi's views on homosexuality but that it did not help when OutRage! was "continuously misrepresenting Islam". (citation needed)
Muslims and gay rights
Tatchell wrote in "the Guardian" that certain Muslim leaders, whom Tatchell describes as appearing "to be representative of the majority of British Muslim opinion", of having "intolerance" to gay people. He said people such as
Hizb ut-Tahrirwere extreme fundamentalists who had an "agenda for clerical fascism," [http://commentisfree.guardian.co.uk/peter_tatchell/2006/10/muslim_hypocrisy_on_free_speec.html "Respect is a two-way street"] Guardian "Comment is Free" article (as commenter)] He notes that its constitution explicitly rejects democracy (non-Islamic parties would be banned) and human rights (non-Muslims would have fewer rights and freedoms).Tatchell further claims that "The suppression of critics within the Muslim community is already excessive", adding "the MCB went out its way to expose Irshad Manjias a lesbian in a "seedy" bid to discredit her ideas." Tatchell had himself previously outed religious figures he viewed as hypocritical and homophobic, but he felt that Manji was neither hypocritical nor homophobic, so the MCB's action in drawing attention to her sexuality was, he said, unjustified.("see above")
In February 2007 the
Mayor of Moscow, Yuri Luzhkov, visited the Mayor of London, Ken Livingstonefor an annual meeting which also involved the Mayors of Berlin and Paris, with the mayor of Beijing present as well. PlanetOut Inc.'s Gay.comwebsite reported "In February 2006, Grand Mufti Talgat Tadzhuddin was quoted as saying about Moscow gay pride marchers, "If they come out on to the streets anyway they should be flogged. Any normal person would do that - Muslims and Orthodox Christians alike..."For these reasons Outrage are co-ordinating a protest at London's City Hall this Wednesday 28 February from 11am to 1.30pm"." [ [http://uk.gay.com/article/5360 London protest at anti-gay Moscow mayor] - Gay.com- 26 February, 2007]
The Mayor of London issued a statement saying "I have already, and continue, to condemn all these and assert the basic human and civil right of gays and lesbians to peacefully demonstrate", but added "'It is clear that there is a concerted attack on gay and lesbian rights in a series of East European countries fed by diverse currents. In Moscow the Russian Orthodox church, the chief rabbi and the
grand Muftiall supported the ban on the Gay Pride march with the main role, due to its great weight in society, being played by the Orthodox church. The attempt of Mr Tatchell to focus attention on the role of the grand Mufti in Moscow, in the face of numerous attacks on gay rights in Eastern Europe which overwhelmingly come from right wing Christian and secular currents, is a clear example of an Islamaphobic campaign." [http://www.london.gov.uk/view_press_release.jsp?releaseid=11031 Mayor of London supports rights of gays and lesbians to peacefully demonstrate throughout Eastern Europe including Moscow] - Mayor of Londons Office - February 28, 2007.] Tatchell responded saying Livingstone's remarks are "dishonest, despicable nonsense", adding "The Grand Mufti was not singled out", he further said the Mayor had brought his "office into disrepute" and "has revealed himself to be a person without principles, honesty or integrity." [http://www.ukgaynews.org.uk/Archive/07/March/0102.htm Gay Pride Parade Wars: Livingstone Attacks Tatchell and Alexeyev Attacks Livingstone] - UK Gay News- March 01, 2007.]
Following the vote by the
Knesset, the Israeli Legislature, in 2007 in favour of bills to ban lesbian and gay pride parades in Jerusalem, the Lesbian and Gay Coalition Against Racism criticised Tatchell saying "Peter Tatchell and others who have distinguished themselves by the speed of their quite proper defence of lesbian and gay rights when these have been attacked by Black, Arab, Muslim forces or regimes have still refused to condemn with equal force the official attacks on lesbian and gay rights by the highest institutions of the State of Israel." Tatchell was, of course, in and out of hospital at the time, as a result of the injuries he received at the hands of far-right assailants in Moscow. On his partial recovery, he issued a strong statement condemning the Judaist fundamentalists who had promoted the pride-ban bill.
In December 2005, the Muslim journalist and Respect party activist
Adam Yosefcame under criticism for an article in Desi Xpressopposing registered civil partnerships and retracted it. His next column identified Peter Tatchell, British National Partyleader Nick Griffinand Omar Bakri Mohammedof Al-Muhajirounas the top three "hate filled bigots", saying that Tatchell needed "a good slap in the face" and his "queer campaign army" should "pack their bent bags and head back to Australia". Tatchell denounced a "naked appeal to homophobia and xenophobia" echoing "the racist, xenophobic language of the BNP",cite web
title=Galloway Activist Urges: Assault Tatchell
first=Peter] and Yosef apologised, claiming the "slap in the face" remark was a "figure of speech". Yosef denied any racism and said the Australian mention referred to "the Islamophobic riots which recently gripped Sydney" (the Cronulla riots). Desi Xpress staff expressed regret to Tatchell and gave him a right of reply.
Tatchell has written about environmental issues which often have disproportionately negative impact on many minority groups; his main campaigns remain centered on human rights and "
title=Biography:30 Years of Gay Human Rights Campaigning 1969 - 1999
accessdate=2008-08-18] In August 2008 Tatchell wrote about the emerging research of
oxygendepletion compared to prehistoric levels, and called for investigation of long-term consequences. Peter Tatchell [http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2008/aug/13/carbonemissions.climatechange "The Oxygen Crisis"] , The Guardian, Comment Is Free 2008-08-13)]
*cite book |author=Tatchell, Peter |title=Democratic Defense |publisher=Millivres-Prowler Group Ltd |location= |year=1984 |isbn=094609716x
Bermondsey by-election, 1983
Gay Liberation Front
Green Party of England and Wales
List of LGBT rights activists
* [http://www.petertatchell.net Peter Tatchell's official site]
* Archived collection of his [http://doughty.gdbtv.com/player.php?h=381f3a53253a57fcb730f86a7cc37d24 "Talking With Tatchell" online TV interviews] on www.18doughtystreet.com.
* cite web
title=Comment is free: Peter Tatchell
Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.
Look at other dictionaries:
Peter Tatchell — Peter Gary Tatchell (* 25. Januar 1952 in Melbourne) ist ein britischer Menschenrechtsaktivist, der unter anderem durch wiederholte versuchte Bürgerfestnahmen von Simbabwes Präsident Robert Mugabe internationale Bekanntheit erlangte. I … Deutsch Wikipedia
Peter Tatchell — Saltar a navegación, búsqueda Peter Tatchell en 2004 Peter Gary Tatchell (nacido el 25 de enero de 1952) es un activista de derechos humanos británico de origen australiano, dedicado mayormente a la defensa de los derechos de los h … Wikipedia Español
Peter Tatchell — Pater Tatchell rejoint le parti des Verts Peter Gary Tatchell (né le 25 janvier 1952) est un militant pour les droits de l homme anglais né australien, rendu célèbre pour sa tentative d arrestation du président du Zimbabwe Robert Mugabe, en 1999… … Wikipédia en Français
Peter G. Tatchell — Peter Tatchell Peter Gary Tatchell (* 25. Januar 1952 in Melbourne) ist ein britischer Menschenrechtsaktivist, der unter anderem durch wiederholte versuchte Bürgerfestnahmen von Zimbabwes Präsident Robert Mugabe internationale Bekanntheit… … Deutsch Wikipedia
Peter Gary Tatchell — Peter Tatchell Peter Gary Tatchell (* 25. Januar 1952 in Melbourne) ist ein britischer Menschenrechtsaktivist, der unter anderem durch wiederholte versuchte Bürgerfestnahmen von Zimbabwes Präsident Robert Mugabe internationale Bekanntheit… … Deutsch Wikipedia
Tatchell — ist der Familienname folgender Personen: Peter Tatchell (* 1952), britischer Menschenrechtsaktivist Terri Tatchell, kanadische Drehbuchautorin Diese Seite ist eine Begriffsklärung zur Unterscheidung mehrerer mit demselben … Deutsch Wikipedia
Peter Hain — Infobox Minister honorific prefix = The Right Honourable name = Peter Hain honorific suffix = MP office = Secretary of State for Work and Pensions term start = 28 June 2007 term end = 24 January 2008 primeminister =Gordon Brown predecessor = John … Wikipedia
Peter Firth — Saltar a navegación, búsqueda Peter Firth Nacimiento 27 de octubre de 1953 (56 años) Bradford, Yorkshire, Inglaterra Año debut 1969 presente Pareja Lindsey Readman (1990 ?) (ex esposa) Hijo/s … Wikipedia Español
Peter Jackson — Infobox Actor name = Peter Jackson imagesize = caption = Jackson in 2003, at the premiere of the in Wellington birthdate = birth date and age|df=yes|1961|10|31 location = Pukerua Bay, New Zealand occupation = Director, producer, screenwriter… … Wikipedia
Тэтчелл, Питер — Питер Тэтчелл (англ. Peter Tatchell; род. 25 января 1952(19520125), Мельбурн, Австралия) … Википедия