Sunday 17 October 2021

Dutch gay marriage rights restricted to locals, wedding tourism ruled out

Photo: Depositphotos.com

Photo: Depositphotos.com

Gay couples from outside the Netherlands who wish to take advantage of liberal Dutch marriage laws cannot come here just to get married, ministers said on Wednesday.

Opening up the right to get married to gay foreigners without residency rights will lead to ‘practical and legal problems’, justice minister Ard van der Steur and foreign minister Bert Koenders said in answer to MPs questions.

The Liberal democratic party D66 had asked the ministers to look into allowing non-resident foreigners to take advantage of Dutch gay marriage laws. The Netherlands became the first country in the world to legalise gay marriage 15 years ago.

The move would make a major contribution to the emancipation of gay couples, the party says.

However, the ministers said ‘this would not be the most effective way of emancipating LHBTs worldwide’. While there are no laws or treaties that would rule it out, such weddings are resisted in many parts of the world and could even be dangerous to the participants, the ministers said.

Homosexuality remains a criminal offence in at least 75 countries. In addition, gay activists do not consider the right to marry in the Netherlands a priority, given only a few people would be able to make use of the option, the ministers said.

Thank you for donating to DutchNews.nl

The DutchNews.nl team would like to thank all the generous readers who have made a donation in recent weeks. Your financial support has helped us to expand our coverage of the coronavirus crisis into the evenings and weekends and make sure you are kept up to date with the latest developments.

DutchNews.nl has been free for 14 years, but without the financial backing of our readers, we would not be able to provide you with fair and accurate news and features about all things Dutch. Your contributions make this possible.

If you have not yet made a donation, but would like to, you can do so via Ideal, credit card or Paypal.