Chile’s president has vowed to push a same-sex marriage bill that is stalled in Congress, a surprising move that stunned his conservative allies.
“I think the time for equal marriage has come,” said Sebastián Piñera, whose popularity has plummeted after street protests and a worsening economy.
The country’s LGBT community has long pushed for the legislation in the historically Catholic country.
But one of the president’s allies labelled the decision as a “betrayal”.
The country approved civil unions between same-sex couples in 2015, allowing them to register for a Civil Union Agreement (AUC) that gives some legal benefits.
A more universal legislation to allow same-sex marriage, presented by former left-leaning President Michelle Bachelet in 2017, has for years languished in Congress, dominated by President Piñera’s conservative coalition.
In his annual State of the Union address, President Piñera said he would give “urgency” to the bill, saying it was time to “guarantee this freedom and dignity to all people”.
“I think we should deepen the value of freedom, including the freedom to love and to form a family with a loved one. Also the value of the dignity of all relationships of love and affection between two people,” the right-wing leader said.
Oscar Rementería, a spokesman of the Movilh group that campaigns for LGBT rights, said the announcement was historic, adding: “Without a doubt, same-sex marriage is at our doorstep, and its approval will improve the lives of… same-sex couples.”
But the move faced strong criticism from members of the president’s coalition. They included evangelical lawmaker Leonidas Romero from the National Renewal (RN) party, who said on Twitter: “It is a lack of respect and a tremendous betrayal for the Christian world.”
Take steps to fend off ransomware attacks, federal ministers urge Canadians
Storm sweeps Hawaii, brings threat of ‘catastrophic’ floods
Document calling on feds to ‘apprehend’ unvaccinated is fake, Ontario officials say
COVID-19: Alberta adds 8 more Omicron cases over weekend
Jussie Smollett trial resumes, unclear if he will testify
Asia3 weeks ago
New Delhi’s air pollution still extremely high despite emergency measures
World2 weeks ago
Third night of violence in Guadeloupe as France sends police special forces
Middle East3 weeks ago
France denies handing over executed journalist Zam to Iran: Report
Europe4 weeks ago
EU accuses Belarus of ‘trafficking’ migrants toward border
Latin America4 weeks ago
Cuba accuses U.S. of organizing new protest demonstrations
Middle East4 weeks ago
The May 2021 Israel-Hamas war was a stress test for normalization
U.S4 weeks ago
Judge OKs US$626 million settlement in Flint water litigation
Middle East4 weeks ago
UN Security Council permanent members condemn Yemen’s Houthi attacks on Saudi Arabia