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Petition for same-sex marriage passed to lawmakers

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Prague, June 26 (CTK) – Activists from the NGO coalition We Are Fair passed three boxes with a petition for the marriage of same-sex couples, signed by 70,350 people in the past six months, to the Czech Chamber of Deputies on Tuesday, activist Czeslav Walek has told journalists.

The proposal by 46 members of the Chamber of Deputies was supported by Prime Minister Andrej Babis’s government (ANO).

“We believe that it is fair for gays and lesbians to be able to marry in the Czech Republic,” Walek said.

“Along with a symbolic level, there is a number of differences between a marriage and partnership. When we speak about people and start explaining the differences, eyes are opened and people say that this is not fair,” he added.

In the Czech Republic, registered partnership of homosexual couples was introduced in 2006. So far, it has been concluded by 2647 couples.

The law on registered partnership defines the establishment and termination of a partnership between two persons of the same sex. The legislation ensures the right to information on the health condition of registered partners and a chance to inherit property just as married couples.

However, it does not enable same-sex couples to adopt children. Registered partners have no right to widow’s or widower’s pension or joint property and joint taxation, which married couples can use.

Under the proposal, same-sex couples are to conclude marriage with the same rights and duties as heterosexuals and registered partnership would vanish.

According to a poll conducted in February, three-fourth of Czechs are for same-sex marriages and three-fifths for their adopting abandoned children living in institutes.

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