Argentine Judge Blocks Latin America's First Gay Marriage

December 1, 2009

by AQ Online

Buenos Aires-based civil court judge Marta Gómez Alsina effectively blocked Latin America’s first gay marriage yesterday when she filed an injunction to stop today’s marriage of Alex Freyre and Jose Maria di Bello until the  case could be reviewed by the Supreme Court.

The couple, whose initial marriage license application was denied in April, won the right to marry when a judge ruled on November 10 that that laws limiting marriage to a man and a woman violated their constitutional right to equality under the law. Local reactions to the November decisions were mixed as Buenos Aires Mayor Mauricio Macri announced that he would not appeal the judge's decision, while Catholic Archbishop Jorge Bergoglio released a statement expressing his disapproval.

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Argentina’s capital has been at the forefront of gay-rights issues since 2002 when it became the first major city in Latin America to approve civil unions for gay couples. However, while Buenos Aires' civil-union law was considered a victory for gay and lesbian rights, it did not allow gay couples to adopt children in the name of both parents, to enable a partner to gain citizenship and to inherit wealth or to be included in insurance policies. The couple, both of whom are gay-rights activists, has vowed to press forward with the ceremony despite the ruling.

Tags: Buenos Aires, Gay Marriage, Civil Unions

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