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Vietnam to Remove Ban on Same Sex Marriage

A new government decree, set to go into effect on November 11, 2013, will remove the current fines associated with same-sex marriages in Vietnam. While an important step for LGBT rights in the country, the decree stops short of legalizing same-sex marriage.

The new decree amends the 2000 Law on Marriage and Family under which same-sex couples are fined between VND100,000-500,000 for getting married. Once in effect, the country will neither ban nor recognize the practice.

Justice Minister Ha Hung Cuong along with Dr. Duong Dang Hue, head of the Civil and Economic Law Department, supported the legislation with the goal to reduce discrimination against homosexual couples and to “show the government’s acceptance of alternative lifestyles.”

Dr. Dinh Xuan Thao, head of the Legislation Studies Institute, said, “After considering historical customs and habits and consulting foreign countries’ similar laws related to marriage and family, we can say that Vietnam has made a remarkable move by neither banning nor recognizing same sex marriage.”

According to Thao, the new legislation will permit same-sex couples to cohabitate and share a household registration book, allowing for binding relations in terms of property, children, and related rights and obligations.

There’s still a long road ahead for legalization of same-sex marriage in Vietnam as the Hanoi People’s Committee, the Vietnam Women's Union and several other agencies don’t believe that the State should recognize same-sex marriage, “since it is against the nation’s customs and habits, and since many other countries do not recognize it.”


Related Articles:

- Another Step Forward for Gay Marriage in Vietnam

- VietPride Arrives in Saigon


[Tuoi Tre]

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