At the beginning of the year we reported on how the overturning of a vote at the United Nations to exclude sexual orientation from a resolution against extrajudicial killings has sparked reaction all around the world.
The 17 June vote at the UN Human Rights Council, which backed LGBT human rights for the first time, is causing similar ripples.
In Bahrain, that country's vote against LGBT human rights caused an unprecedented statement from civil society.
The Bahrain Human Rights Watch Society secretary-general Faisal Fulad said it was time the rights of gays, lesbians and transsexuals were recognised.
"There are gay MPs in Europe and hundreds of societies working actively to protect their rights worldwide," he said.Former Bahrain Human Rights Society secretary-general Abdulla Al Deerazi agreed:
"Either we accept this or reject it. There is no other option in our society. These people have their rights that should be respected. I am not saying not to respect religion and culture, but gradual acceptance can slowly change the mindset."
"They are first human beings and have their rights. They have their freedom of choice which cannot be ignored but respected," he said.Mr Fulad said gays and lesbians were often considered carriers of diseases.
"This UN resolution is a step forward recognising them in society. But the challenge is social sensitivity to this subject coupled with religious beliefs of people. They are living like any other citizen and should enjoy full rights."
"Some even consider them untouchable. But they have their own culture that is growing worldwide."The Bahrain Human Rights Watch Society, (BHRWS) was established in November 2004 to protect housemaids and to fight for women’s rights.
The Bahrain Human Rights Society is the main human rights group in Bahrain. Abdulla Al Deerazi was interrogated by the military in May during the current unrest in Bahrain.
The statement by the two human rights groups was followed up by a letter of support published by Gulf News from 'a High School student' who said:
"Being gay isn't a lifestyle choice or a preference, people were born that way, just like I was born Asian or you were born Arab."In February this year over 100 men were arrested for "conduct against public morality."
Gay Middle East commented at the time:
"Traditionally Bahrain is known as relatively open minded and as the playground for the GCC (Gulf Cooperation Council) – where people can relax, drink and enjoy prostitution. This is the second incident in less than three months where the police raided such establishments. These incidents raise questions if this is a change of policy and of the traditional tolerance in Bahrain."