The prime minister of Croatia has announced plans to recognise at least some 'gay marriage' rights.
Prime Minister Zoran Milanovic told reporters that registered partnerships would be ‘a somewhat higher standard than what we have now,' according to the Associated Press, though he may still stop short of full marriage equality.
Improving the legal rights of same-sex couples was promised during the election campaign of the Milanovic’s Social Democratic Party. The Social Democratic Party is the largest part in a coalition that took over from the socially conservative Croatian Democratic Union in December 2011.
‘I hope that the people of Croatia accept it,' said Milanovic. 'It’s simply a form of social empathy and decency and expanding freedom.'
The recent Rainbow Europe Map and Index published by ILGA-Europe gave Croatia 10 points, immediately below Austria, Iceland and Finland and immediately above the Czech Republic, Denmark, Ireland, Slovakia and Slovenia.
Croatia won points for a constitution that prohibits discrimination on sexual orientation and gender identity, and lost points over the fact that the first pride parade in Split in June 2011 was attacked by homophobic yobs, who threw weapons at the parade, injuring nearly all 300 pride participants.
A week later the Zagreb Pride 2011 parade was the biggest ever in Croatia, with over 1,000 participants and ‘proceeded without violence or any major homophobic/transphobic incident’ the ILGA-Europe report said.