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Argentina Moving Toward Gay Marriage Rights
by Newscenter Staff

Posted: March 1, 2007 - 12:01 am ET

(Buenos Aires) Legislation will be presented in Argentina's Parliament this fall that would give same-sex couples all of the rights of marriage.  

Currently the law limits marriage to opposite-sex couples. However the country does afford gay and lesbian couples some rights including inheritance, adoption and survivor pensions.

Two regions of the country permit civil unions - the province of Río Negro and the federal district of Buenos Aires. 

In 2003 Rio Negro became the first area in South America to permit civil unions.

A poll released this week shows that three-quarters of those surveyed in the capital believe gays and lesbians should be allowed to marry.  Only 25 percent disagreed.

The national civil unions bill would give same-sex couples all of the rights of marriage without the name.  It was written with the support of the country's largest LGBT civil rights group, the Argentinean Homosexual Community.

Same-sex marriage is currently legal in the Netherlands, Belgium, Spain, Canada, South Africa and the state of Massachusetts. At least 18 countries offer some form of legal recognition to same-sex unions.

In 2005 a judge ordered prison authorities in central Argentine province of Córdoba to allow conjugal visits between gay prisoners and their partners.

The Catholic Church is opposed to any legal recognition of same-sex relationships and has vowed to fight the proposed federal bill.

© 2007


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