Lithuania will debate draft bill legalising same-sex partnerships
The Lithuanian parliament has accepted a bill legalising same-sex civil partnerships for further debate, after voting down a similar proposal in May 2021.
The draft law on civil union proposes to abandon the definition of partnership in the Family Code of the Civil Code and replace it with a new concept: the civil union. It would be a voluntary agreement between two persons to legally protect their personal relationship.
Seventy lawmakers voted in favour and 52 against. Therefore accepting the measure for discussion on Thursday. According to Al Jazeera, several opponents raised questions about whether legalising same-sex partnerships would go against Catholic teachings.
The acceptance of the draft bill is the first step in legalising same-sex civil partnerships. These projects will now be considered by parliamentary committees.
Jurgita Sejonienė, a conservative MP of the Christian Democrats, believes that one third of the Lithuanian population in Lithuania is homosexual. This writes the Lithuanian news portal Respublika. According to Worldometer, there are around 2,7 million people in Lithuania.
Sejonienė said this in response to a question from Aidas Gedvilas, a member of the Seimas. He asked on what grounds a draft bill like this was being developed and what specific problems it was solving. According to Sejonienė, this law is indeed not necessary for most Lithuanians. "But there are more than half a million unmarried people in Lithuania. I can’t specify how many homosexual people there are, but I guess that number could approach a million. This is not the majority, but a significant number."
The Lithuanian Institute of Christian Culture, meanwhile, has started a petition against the possible legalisation of same-sex partnerships. The institute argues that a family can only be based on a union between a man and a woman. Within a few days, the petitioners collected over 7500 signatories. Several Lithuanian celebrities, including Cardinal Sigitas Tamkevičius and the priest Arnoldas Valkauskas shared the petition. This reports the newsportal Alkas.
It is not the first petition of the Institute. In 2019, it collected 21,800 signatures of Lithuanian citizens against the LGBT Pride march in Vilnius.
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