Taiwan makes history today, as the first Asian country to legalise gay marriage.
The giant leap for human and LGBT rights in Taiwan was handed down from the constitutional court, who have just ruled that same-sex couples have the right to legally marry.
The court, known as the Judicial Yuan, said current marriage laws were ‘in violation of both the people’s freedom of marriage and the people’s right to equality’, reports the Independent.
The court ruling, which must be legally enacted within two years, continued:
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.
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 recognised, will constitute the collective basis, together with opposite-sex marriage, for a stable society.
LGBTQ activists in Asia have been tirelessly campaigning for Taiwanese courts to allow same-sex marriage. The elected Democratic Progressive Party have consistently supported the change in marriage laws.
It is hoped the self-ruled island of Taiwan, which is known for its comparatively liberal attitudes, will spark change in more conservative nations elsewhere in Asia.