Thailand’s Legislature Approves Same-Sex Marriage

Lawmakers in Thailand voted on Tuesday to approve a wedding equality invoice, a transfer that places the nation on a transparent path to changing into the primary in Southeast Asia to legalize same-sex marriage.

Thailand’s Senate handed the invoice by 130 votes to 4, with some abstentions, on Tuesday afternoon. It was authorized by the House of Representatives in March. The laws would develop into legislation after it’s reviewed by a Senate committee and the Constitutional Court and receives royal assent from the king, a formality that’s broadly anticipated to be granted.

“After 20 years of trying to legalize this matter,” activist Plaifa Kyoka Shodladd, 18, stated within the Senate chamber after the vote, “finally, love wins.”

The invoice’s passage underscores Thailand’s standing as a relative haven for homosexual {couples} in Asia. Only Taiwan and Nepal have legalized same-sex marriage.

While India got here near doing so final yr, the Supreme Court deferred the choice to Parliament. Prime Minister Narendra Modi has spoken strongly in opposition to legalizing homosexual marriage.

In some Asian international locations, homosexual intercourse is a felony offense. Indonesia, the place homosexual marriage is unlawful, made extramarital intercourse unlawful in 2022. In 2019, Brunei made homosexual intercourse punishable with loss of life by stoning. It later stated it could not perform executions after widespread worldwide protest.

Thailand’s invoice calls marriage a partnership between two folks age 18 and above, with out specifying their gender. It additionally provides L.G.B.T.Q. {couples} equal rights to undertake youngsters, declare tax allowances, inherit property and provides consent for medical remedy when their companions are incapacitated.

The invoice has been contentious since its first model was launched over 20 years in the past. While Thailand is among the most open locations on the earth for homosexual {couples}, it’s socially conservative in different methods. In February, lawmakers dismissed a proposal to let folks change genders on official paperwork.

But a majority of the Thai public helps the wedding equality invoice. Last yr, 60 p.c of adults in Thailand stated they supported legalizing same-sex marriage in a survey by the Pew Research Center.

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