LGBT group criticises UK Government for ‘same-sex marriage farce’

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A leading LGBT rights support organisation in Northern Ireland has called on the UK Government to end the “farce” of marriage inequality across the UK.

The Rainbow Project, Northern Ireland’s largest LGBT support organisation criticised the Government for having introduced same-sex marriage in England and Wales and Scotland, but not Northern Ireland.

Referring to the Foreign and Commonwealth Office’s announcement last week on the countries which hold British consulates where British citizens may enter a same-sex marriage, Rainbow encouraged the introduction of same-sex marriage in Northern Ireland.

Speaking on these developments, The Rainbow Project’s Policy and Advocacy Manager, Gavin Boyd said: “The cognitive dissonance displayed by the UK government is breath-taking. They want British citizens to be permitted to marry in Beijing and Moscow, but not Belfast. They want British marriages recognised abroad, but not in Northern Ireland. What kind of government allows such blatant discrimination against its own citizens?

“In our opinion, the same-sex marriage bill passed in Westminster was fundamentally flawed. By not following the precedent set by the Civil Partnerships Act, which was settled on a UK-wide basis, the government has passed legislation which is riddled with constitutional anomalies.

“People living in Northern Ireland have the same right to marry as those living in England, Scotland and Wales and if politicians cannot see the irrationality and unreasonableness of the current law, a remedy will be sought through the courts.”

Under secondary same-sex marriage legislation which came into effect last week, couples can marry in 23 British consulates across the world under British law where local law prohibits same-sex marriage, including Russia and China.

The countries are Australia, Azerbaijan, Bolivia, Cambodia, Chile, China, Colombia, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Japan, Kosovo, Latvia, Mongolia, Montenegro, Nicaragua, Peru, Philippines, Russia, San Marino, Serbia, and Vietnam.