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Constitutional Court to rule on gay marriage case Wednesday
【Society】2017-05-21  20:15:00
Taipei, May 21 (CNA) Taiwan's Council of Grand Justices is set to release its interpretation on the constitutionality of same-sex marriage on May 24.

The council will make the ruling after it received two requests for a constitutional interpretation on the issue.

One of them was filed by veteran gay rights advocate Chi Chia-wei (祁家威) in 2015 after his registration of marriage with his male partner was rejected by the household registration office in Wanhua District in Taipei in 2013 and subsequent court appeals failed.

The other request was filed by the Taipei City government's Department of Civil Affairs in 2015 after three same-sex couples filed an administrative lawsuit against the government after their marriage registrations were rejected by the department.

The Council of Grand Justices held a hearing on the issue on March 24 allowing supporters and opponents of marriage equality to debate whether Article 972 of the Civil Code, which states that marriage is between a man and a woman, is unconstitutional.

Taiwan was the first Asian country to allow a constitutional interpretation on the issue.

If the judges rule that Taiwan's current ban is constitutional, same-sex marriage will not have legal protection. If it rules that the ban is unconstitutional, then the Legislative Yuan will be forced to amend the law to legalize same-sex marriage.

Even as the case has been taken up by the Council of Grand Justices, proposed same-sex marriage legislation is also working its way through the Legislative Yuan.

(By Wang Yang-yu and Evelyn Kao)
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