LGBT activists in Asia are celebrating a wonderful win yesterday — Taiwan legalized gay marriage, and in doing so, they made history by becoming the first place in Asia to legalize same-sex marriage.
The Taiwanese constitutional court declared on Wednesday that the current marriage laws are “in violation of both the people’s freedom of marriage … and the people’s right to equality.” It also stipulated that Taiwan has two years to make legal amendments to allow for same-sex marriage.
“If relevant laws are not amended or enacted within the said two years, two persons of the same sex who intend to create the said permanent union shall be allowed to have their marriage registration effectuated,” the court said.
“Sexual orientation is an immutable characteristic that is resistant to change.”
“Furthermore, the freedom of marriage for two persons of the same sex, once legally recognized, will constitute the collective basis, together with opposite-sex marriage, for a stable society,” the court said.
Chi Chia-wei, a veteran gay rights activist petitioned the court for same-sex marriage. Chia-wei said, “This ruling has made me very happy.”
Victoria Hsu, the lead lawyer supporting Chi’s case said the ruling made it extremely clear that same-sex couples have the same marriage rights as straight couples. “This is a clear victory for equal rights in marriage and it is also a victory for all the people,” Hsu said.
Congratulations, Taiwan! Check out the video below to see some pictures from the celebration: