Finally LGBTQ activists can rejoice in Japan! On an announcement on Wednesday, Governor Yuriko Koike said that Tokyo finally would recognize same-sex partnerships, becoming the largest city in Japan to accept such tradition as activists push for national recognition.
The constitution of Japan still states that “marriage shall be only with the mutual consent of both sexes.” However, local municipalities have stepped up lately and have agreed to cherish and recognize same-sex relationships. Still, not all of the country recognizes the move and many activists have filed against the government to accept the same-sex marriage.
“In response to the wishes of Tokyo residents and those concerned by this issue, we will draft a basic principle to recognize same-sex partnerships this fiscal year,” Koike announced late Tuesday.
She also said that the city had plans to launch the policy before the end of the financial year that will end in March 2023.
Numerous cities have followed suit activists have claimed that 110 local governments have now recognized the same-sex partnership and have granted couples rights, including the right to visit a partner at a hospital together and even rent out a home with each other.
However, there are exceptions. Not every LGBT couple in Japan resides in areas with these certifications — and even those with them are often not acknowledged.
In 2011, more than a dozen couples brought lawsuits across Japan in opposition to the constitutionality of Japan’s refusal to recognize gay marriage.
Polls on opinion have found that most people in Japan favor recognition of same-sex marriages. However, the conservative-lead Liberal Democratic Party has been unwilling to pursue changes.
Prime Minister Fumio Kishida has been cautious about hot social issues and stated during the leadership contest of his party in the year 2000 that he has “not reached the point of accepting same-sex marriage.”
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