Fresh calls made for same-sex marriage to be recognised across the EU

Members of the European Parliament are calling for a new rule to ensure same-sex marriages are recognised across all EU member states.

The move comes after MEPs passed a law yesterday making it easier for European citizens moving between countries to prove the authenticity of documents, such as marriage or birth certificates.

The majority of EU countries still don’t recognise same-sex marriage, meaning couples can face problems if moving from the state in which their union was originally registered.

Gay Labour MEP Seb Dance told PinkNews: “We must continue to push national governments to make sure the principle of freedom of movement is available to everyone EU citizen, regardless of who you love.”

Daniele Viotti, co-president of the European Parliament’s LGBTI Intergroup, added: “Freedom of movement is the cornerstone of the EU.

“However, too many couples are still facing discriminatory barriers when exercising this right.

“A married same-sex couple in one state can lose its rights simply by crossing a border. This is unacceptable.”

Malin Björk, an MEP for the Nordic Green Left, echoed Viotti’s statement.

“While I welcome the vote today, I call on the Commission to do more and work on recognition of the effects of civil status documents in the EU,” she said.

“Freedom of movement simply does not exist if your civil status evaporates at the border of one Member State.”

The Socialist MEP who spearheaded yesterday’s changes, Mady Delvaux, also acknowledged the EU must go further: “We also want the content of public documents to be recognised.

“Only then can we ensure that cross-border marriages are as uncomplicated as those within a member state are and ensure EU citizens in civil partnerships or same-sex marriages would have that status recognised in any other EU states.

“We will continue to push the Commission to come up with proposals on this issue.”

However, the proposed change would potentially face legal problems.

While Greece and Italy have recently introduced civil partnerships, other EU members, including Bulgaria, Croatia and Poland, still have constitutional bans in place preventing same-sex marriages.