World Sexual Health Day: ‘Sex Still a Hush-Hush Topic, Youths Need Healthy Space’, Say Experts
Indian Express, India, 9/4/2018
Anything related to sex and sexuality still remain a ‘hush-hush’ topic in India. These are the initial findings of an ongoing study of 900 unmarried youngsters to understand their sexual health needs. On the occasion of World Sexual Health Day, observed on September 4, experts said the sexual health concerns of youth require sensitive, non-judgmental and pragmatic responses. “It is important to have spaces where young people can express themselves freely, not having to bother about judgements being passed,” said Dr Vinay Kulkarni, co-founder of the NGO Prayas and the coordinator of the study currently being undertaken. So far, the findings have shown that the youth have become more liberal and accepting when it comes to larger conversations on sexuality, but they still need safe spaces.
HIV Infections among the Youth on the Rise
Daily Nation, Kenya, 9/3/2018
Kenya’s Ministry of Health has raised concerns over the rise in new HIV infections among the youth, terming it a drawback in the fight against HIV. According to her, the 2018 Global Progress Report by UNAIDS confirms that attainment of HIV eradication targets by 2020 may be an uphill task if interventions are not scaled up, especially in regard to new infections and stigma levels. Kenya has, over the past decade, made deliberate efforts towards HIV prevention. These include embracing of biomedical approaches such as test and start strategies, condom programming and high-impact interventions towards the elimination of parent-to-child HIV and syphilis transmissions. However, more efforts need to be overtaken if the rising rate of infections are to be combated effectively.
LGBT Rights: Malaysia Women Caned for Attempting to have Lesbian Sex
BBC, Malaysia, 9/3/2018
Two Malaysian women convicted of attempting to have ‘lesbian sex’ in a car were caned in a religious court on September 3, 2018. Though homosexuality is illegal in Malaysia, this is the State's first conviction for same-sex relations and its first public caning, which was witnessed by more than 100 people, according to a local news outlet. Human rights activists were in uproar and heavily condemned the caning. Malaysian rights group Women's Aid Organisation told Reuters news agency it was ‘appalled by this grave violation of human rights’. The couple, whose identities have not been revealed, were arrested in April by Islamic enforcement officers after they were found in a car in a public square in Terengganu.