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Thailand set to sign-off on same-sex marriage today


Thailand looks set to become the first Southeast Asian nation to legalise same-sex marriage with the Senate expected to approve the new legislation today.

It then goes to the King for royal assent and will come into effect after publication in the Royal Gazette. This makes Thailand the third country in Asia to recognise same-sex marriage, after Taiwan and Nepal, and the first in SE Asia.

LGBTQ activist Siritata Ninlapruek is confident the Senate will today vote in favour of the law.

“I am confident that the bill will pass. I believe that parliament members will realise the importance of equal rights and the family institution. This topic is too big to fail.”

The caretaker Senate is meeting from 9.30am today and the final decision is expected by this afternoon. The new law will give the same rights to homosexual couples as those afforded to heterosexual partnerships, including inheritance and adoption rights.

PM Srettha Thavisin has long voiced his support for Thailand’s LGBTQ community. Following today’s vote, he is expected to open his official residence to campaigners and supporters celebrating the historic day, although he himself will be absent, having tested positive for Covid-19.

Activists are also expected to host a gathering, complete with drag show, in central Bangkok. The capital’s large shopping centres have been flying the rainbow flag since the start of Pride Month on June 1.

In 2001, the Netherlands became the first country in the world to legalise same-sex marriage and since then, another 30 countries have followed suit. However, Asia lags behind, with only 2 countries recognising marriage equality so far – that is expected to become 3 later today.


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