Alexa
  • Directory of Taiwan

Taipei City to seek constitutional interpretation on gay marriage

Taipei City to seek constitutional interpretation on gay marriage

Taipei, July 23 (CNA) The Taipei City government said Thursday that it is in the process of seeking a constitutional interpretation on whether Taiwan's Civil Code violates the Constitution by restricting marriage to heterosexual couples. In a statement, the city's Department of Civil Affairs said it completed the documents for submission to the court July 2. The documents were approved by the city government on July 20 and will be sent to the Ministry of the Interior next week, the department said. Article 972 of the Civil Code states that "an agreement to marry shall be made by the male and the female parties in their own concord." The city government is seeking the opinion of the Justices of the Constitutional Court on whether that article and other marriage-related articles in the Civil Code violate articles in the Constitution that pertain to freedom and equality, Hong Jin-da (???), a section chief at the department, told CNA. The civil affairs department said the Taipei City government respects the opinions of people on both sides of the same-sex marriage argument, but since the Constitutional Court has never issued an interpretation on the matter, the question has arisen of whether the relevant laws may be unconstitutional. Countries around the world are now adopting a more open attitude toward same-sex marriage, the city's civil affairs department said, citing the example of a recent U.S. Supreme Court's ruling that legalized gay marriage across the United States. In Taiwan, a proposed amendment to the Civil Code, aimed at legalizing same-sex marriage, cleared the first reading in the Legislative Yuan in 2013. The bill was reviewed for the first time in the committee stage in the Legislative Yuan last December, but has since been stalled due largely to opposition from religious groups. Under the proposed amendment, the terms "man and woman," "husband and wife" and "father and mother" in the Civil Code would be changed to the gender-neutral "two parties," "spouses" and "parents," respectively. The Taipei City government is the first government body in Taiwan to seek a constitutional interpretation on same-sex marriage. (By Christie Chen)


Updated : 2021-09-17 21:35 GMT+08:00