Slovakia parliament rejects gay partnership law

BRATISLAVA Tue Nov 6, 2012 10:24am EST

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BRATISLAVA (Reuters) - Slovakia's parliament rejected on Tuesday an opposition proposal to recognize homosexual partnerships in the strongly Catholic country, where coming out as gay remains relatively rare.

During two days of heated debate, conservatives accused the opposition of blasphemy, and said granting same-sex relationships equivalent legal status as heterosexual marriage was against traditional family values and a risk for society.

Only 14 of 129 deputies present voted to send the bill to a second reading, 94 were against and 20 abstained.

"The purpose of the official recognition of same-sex partnerships' legitimacy is the fulfillment of these people's love and responsible relationships," said opposition Freedom and Solidarity party member Martin Poliacik, co-author of the bill, in his opening speech to parliament last week.

Replying for the Christian Democrats, also an opposition party, Pavol Hrusovsky, former speaker of the house, said: "This draft law, ladies and gentlemen, is an insane legislative attempt to crash the entire legal system."

"This is something that is unprecedented," he said. "You are trying to change the face of this country."

Sixty-two percent of Slovaks declare themselves Roman Catholics and being gay remains taboo even two decades after the fall of communism and independence.

Of the European Union's 27 member states, 14 recognize same-sex partnerships, including the neighboring Czech Republic.

The center-right government of Robert Fico approved in October the creation of a committee for the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender community, as a forum for public debate, a move criticized by the Christian Democrats and Slovakia's Conference of Bishops.

(Reporting by Martin Santa; Editing by Robin Pomeroy)

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Comments (2)
Yesyes wrote:
How the Catholic church can claim the moral high ground in Slovakia after what they did there in WW2 is mind boggling

Nov 06, 2012 4:08pm EST  --  Report as abuse
rishqo wrote:
1. The government of Robert Fico is centre-left not centre-right as the last paragraph suggests.

2. It seems my home country Slovakia, now governed solely by centre-left Social Democrats ( who themselves are kleptocrats corrupted to the bone ), is the beacon of pro-family, value-based conservative side of running culture war in Western Civilization. Unbelievable and possible only in Slovakia!

Nov 06, 2012 9:51pm EST  --  Report as abuse
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