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Namibia court refuses to recognise same-sex marriages

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A Namibian court on Thursday refused to recognize same-sex marriages performed in other countries, even as the judge expressed sympathy for the couples who brought the case.

Two couples married outside of Namibia had petitioned the High Court to recognize their unions.
But High Court Judge Hannelie Prinsloo said she was bound by a two-decade-old High Court ruling that banned same-sex marriage in Namibia.
In delivering the 60-page ruling, Prinsloo said he believed the Supreme Court was wrong and made arguments to recognize same-sex marriage.
“The court told us this morning, 'Look, we want to help you, we think you should be successful on constitutional issues,'” said attorney Carli Schlickerling.
Namibia court refuses to recognise same-sex marriages

A Namibian court on Thursday refused to recognize same-sex marriages performed in other countries, even as the judge expressed sympathy for the couples who brought the case.

Two couples married outside of Namibia had petitioned the High Court to recognize their unions.

But High Court Judge Hannelie Prinsloo said she was bound by a two-decade-old High Court ruling that banned same-sex marriage in Namibia.

In delivering the 60-page ruling, Prinsloo said he believed the Supreme Court was wrong and made arguments to recognize same-sex marriage.

“The court told us this morning, ‘Look, we want to help you, we think you should be successful on constitutional issues,’” said attorney Carli Schlickerling.

“It appears that the court is explaining to the Supreme Court why we should succeed on appeal,” he said.

The couples expressed disappointment but said they would likely ask the Supreme Court to reverse their earlier ruling.

“Most likely, we will go to the Supreme Court and change the current Supreme Court ruling to reflect justice,” said Anette Seiler, who is married to German citizen Anita Seiler-Lilles.

They brought the case together with Namibian citizen Johann Potgeiter and his South African husband, Daniel Digashu.

Potgeiter and Digashu have a 13-year-old son, Lucas, who was adopted from South Africa.

The son was granted residency in Namibia in a previous case.

Namibia has seen a wave of court challenges surrounding marriage, child rearing, and the migration of same-sex couples.

Homosexuality is illegal in Namibia under a rarely enforced 1927 sodomy law that dates from his period of South African rule.

Last October, the Namibian High Court granted citizenship to the two-year-old son of a gay couple, ending a legal battle over surrogacy and same-sex parenting.

Source Credit: TheGuardian

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