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LGBTI couples in Taiwan to celebrate marriage equality with massive banquet

LGBTI couples in Taiwan to celebrate marriage equality with massive banquet

Equal marriage activists held a banquet outside the Presidential Office in 2013 (Photo: YouTube)

LGBTI couples in Taiwan are planning a massive wedding banquet to celebrate marriage equality next month.

Same-sex marriage will become legal in Taiwan on 24 May according to a Constitutional Court ruling in 2017.

Parliament is currently debating two bills to legislate the ruling.

Local LGBTI rights organization the TAPCRP is organizing a grand traditional wedding banquet outside the presidential palace in the capital Taipei on 25 May.

The group has organized 120 tables seating more than 1,000 people.

‘We invite everyone to join us in welcoming new pages in Taiwan’s history’ the invitation also says.

Taiwan’s long road to same-sex marriage

Taiwan is set to become the first country in Asia to legalize same-sex unions by May 24.

In February, the government drafted a same-sex marriage bill and passed it to parliament.

But as the details emerged, the government, lawmakers, and activists admitted it fell short of true marriage equality.

The compromise bill comes after a devastating referendum loss in November 2018. Taiwan voters opted for a separate law to legalize same-sex unions rather than to change the Civil Code.

In May 2017, Taiwan’s Constitutional Court ruled it was unconstitutional to deny marriage rights to same-sex couples. It gave a two-year deadline to legislate.

But, following the referendum, conservative groups have been lobbying lawmakers to enact a ‘cohabitation’ or ‘partnership’ law to afford same-sex couples similar rights as marriage.

Taiwan’s opposition party also introduced a same-sex union bill to parliament. LGBTI rights groups and families denounced it as ‘homophobic’.