By Melanie Nathan, May 15, 2014.
In a PinkNews Exclusive, it is reported that The British Society of Magazine Editors (BSME) announced it will no longer have its awards dinner at the London Dorchester hotel owned by the Sultan of Brunei – due to his country’s new rule on stoning gays and adulterers to death.
The Sultan of Brunei, Hassanal Bolkiah owns the Dorchester Collection of hotels, which includes The Beverley Hills Hotel and Hotel Bel Air, in Los Angeles.
In a letter sent to its members on Thursday, the BSME said:
“It is no secret that, after many successful years at The Hilton Park Lane, we felt the time had come for a change of scene – to that effect, we had signed an agreement to host this year’s event at The Dorchester hotel. The BSME committee had very much been looking forward to the event, which would have been the first time we had held the awards at The Dorchester. It has, however, been impossible for us to ignore the recent introduction of draconian new laws imposed by the Sultan of Brunei, the owner of The Dorchester Collection, relating to those involved in same sex or adulterous relationships.”
“There has been much disquiet among the BSME committee regarding the news, to the extent that it was the clear majority view that we simply cannot, with a clear conscience, host an event that represents the magazine industry at the hotel. We have, therefore, taken the decision to withdraw from our agreement with The Dorchester.”
The BSME Awards Dinner will now take place at a different venue on 17 November.