Bolivian court strikes down ruling against a same-sex union

Bolivian court strikes down ruling against a same-sex union

The ruling could be a step toward Bolivia legalising same-sex marriages.

A Bolivian court has struck down a ruling from officials against a same-sex couple who wished to have their union registered. The ruling came from a junior court in the country, the Second Constitutional Chamber of the La Paz Court of Justice.

The case was brought about by a same-sex couple living in La Paz, who had lived together for ten years. They wished to have their union registered, but Serecí, the Civil Registry Service, refused them last year. Both members of the court, said this decision went against the couple’s human rights.

In their ruling, they said: “It is not [our] role to distinguish the worth that one family bond has from another. However, this court considers that it is the obligation of the states to recognize these family ties and protect them according to the Convention.”

The court also elected to follow the 2018 decision from the Inter-American Court of Human Rights (IACHR), which ruled that all countries under its jurisdiction, which includes Bolivia, need to treat same-sex couples “without discrimination.”

The ruling has already had a positive effect in South America, as it led to Ecuador and Costa Rica legalising same-sex marriage, something that has been constitutionally banned in Bolivia since 2009.

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