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Taiwan court ruling paves way for LGBT marriage equality

Taiwan’s highest court made history Wednesday by ruling in favour of same-sex marriage.

The decision comes after years of campaigning by LGBT rights organisations, and paves the way for marriage equality.  It makes Taiwan the first place in Asia in which LGBT relationships are officially recognised.

Fourteen judges ruled that the law preventing LGBT couples from marrying was unconstitutional, meaning a change in the law must be made in the next two years.

Wayne Lin from LGBT rights group Taiwan Tongzhi Hotline Association emphasised that the decision does not mark the end of the fight for LGBT equality.

Speaking before the ruling he said: “The next step is really about how to create a better place for LGBT people in Taiwan. First of all we need to continue the gender equality education, that’s important for the next generation and for all of Taiwan.”

Campaigners hope that the monumental ruling will create a ripple of change in the continent, and prove that marriage equality is a human right.

“It’s important to share our experience to other countries because Asia is the only continent without any country with gender equality. If we can be the first one we can prove that marriage equality is not western - it is a global value that as long as you want to get married your rights should be recognised. We want to show that to the Asian countries,” Wayne added.

Taiwanese authorities must now revise their civil code to reflect the decision, and have two years in which to do so.

 

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