China admits first same sex marriage rights lawsuit

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Beijing, Jan 6: China's first lawsuit on same-sex marriage rights has been accepted by a court, marking a milestone for gay, bisexual and transgender rights, official media reported.

Plaintiff Sun Wenlin (pseudonym), a gay man, told state run Global Times daily that the court has accepted his suit against the civil affairs bureau in Changsha's Furong district for not accepting his marriage registration application.

China admits same sex marriage lawsuit

Sun filed the case on December 16 after his marriage registration application was turned down by an official who said that only "one man and one woman" can be registered as married.

Sun claimed that local police also visited his home after he filed the case, which has gained a high profile and has been hailed by many LGBT activists online. "The officer kept emphasising that it is important to have a child to carry on one's family name, but I can't abide by people imposing their values on me," Sun added.

"The original text of the Marriage Law does not say one man and one woman, but a husband and a wife. I personally believe that this term refers not only to heterosexual couples but also to same-sex couples," he was quoted as saying by the Global Times previously. The court is expected to hand down a ruling on the case within six months.

PTI

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