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Transgender YouTube star Viktoria, 14, wins plaudits at Swedish gala

A 14-year-old transgender girl whose YouTube channel dealing with gender identity issues has become a national hit in Sweden, won plaudits at a glitzy awards ceremony for the country's gay, bisexual and transgender communities on Monday.

Transgender YouTube star Viktoria, 14, wins plaudits at Swedish gala
Viktoria Harrysson, 14, accepts her award on Monday. Photo: Erik Simander/TT
Viktoria Harrysson, who has 50,000 followers on YouTube, was awarded the Transgender of the Year prize at the televised QX Gay Gala. Viktoria says she realized she was a girl when she was ten.
 
In an emotional speech she thanked her parents, who also attended the gala, for supporting her.
 
“This is such a big thing. I feel like a sweaty potato, but I am so happy,” she said. She was awarded the prize by Sara Danius, permanent secretary of the Swedish Academy, best known as the person who announces the winner of the Nobel Literature Prize.
 
Other prizes went to ice hockey player Anders Nilsson, who was awarded Hetero of the Year. The Swede, who plays for the Vancouver Canucks in Canada, won the prize for wearing a helmet painted in the colours of the rainbow to show his support for diversity in sport. 
 
The Homo of the Year prize went to veteran performer and drag artist Christer Lindarw.
 
Christer Lindarw, Homo of the Year. Photo: Erik Simander/TT 
 
A special prize for Kiss of the Year went to the stars of an ad for Canal Digital, Irish model Shane and English actor Paul, who flew in from London to receive the award. See the film below:
 
 
The popularity of the gala, which was celebrating its twentieth anniversary, was underlined by the stream of international singers who turned out to perform. They included gay favourites Mel C of the Spice Girls and Israeli Eurovision winner Dana International. Other performers included Harpo, who sung Moviestar, his global hit from 1976, and current Swedish favourite Kamferdrops with Jag trodde änglarna fanns. 
 
Mel C. Photo: Erik Simander/TT 
 
There were serious notes too: Helena Bergström paid tribute to fellow actor Rikard Wolff, who died last year at the age of 59. And TV producer Christer Björkman, who won a prize for his book Generalen, added a note of caution to the celebrations:
 
“We must keep reminding ourselves, our families, friends and the media that all these steps forward can easily be reversed. We can never allow that to happen.”
 
 

“Movie star” #qxgalan

Ett inlägg delat av The Local Sweden (@thelocalsweden) 5 Feb 2018 kl. 2:43 PST

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Gay Sweden Democrat backs party’s Pride flag decision

The anti-immigration Sweden Democrats' most senior openly gap MP has defended party colleagues' decision to stop flying the rainbow gay pride flag outside a local city council headquarters.

Gay Sweden Democrat backs party's Pride flag decision
Christian Democrat leader Ebba Busch Thor took part in the Stockholm pride parade this August. Photo: Stina Stjernkvist/TT
Bo Broman, who has himself several times attended Sweden's largest Pride parade in Stockholm, told The Local that the rainbow flag was “an important symbol, for me and for many others”. 
 
But he said he did not believe it was appropriate for any political symbol to be flown outside a public building. 
 
“I personally don't think that any political symbol or flag representing organisations, companies, football teams and so on belongs on public flagpoles,” he said. 
 
“No matter how inportant the issue is, public flagpoles should only carry the Swedish flag, the official flag for the municipality, flags from visiting countries and perhaps that of the EU or UN.” 
 
Bo Broman, who was previously the Sweden Democrats' financial chief, became an MP after the 2018 election. Photo: Henrik Montgomery/TT
 
The city council in Solvesborg in the county of Blekinge voted on Thursday to no longer fly the rainbow flag on the flagpole outside its offices, where it has since 2013 been hoisted once a year to show support for gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender people on the day of the pride parade in Stockholm. 
 
The vote has been widely criticised, with Filippa Reinfeldt, the   lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer rights spokesperson for the Moderate Party saying the backing the party's local wing gave to the decision was “inappropriate”.  
 
But Broman pointed out that Magnus Kolsjö, a former president of The Swedish federation for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer rights (RFSL), had also backed Solversborg's decision. 
 
“We need to be able to keep the political, private and civil society on one side, and the state and municipality on the other,” Kolsjö, who is now a Christian Democrat politician, wrote on his blog on Sunday. 
 
“To hoist up a political symbol, even if it stands for values which many support, doesn't fit with the needs to maintain objectivity.” 
 
The council decision was pushed by the ruling four-party coalition of the Sweden Democrats, Moderates, Christian Democrats and the local SoL party.  
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