A lesbian couple in France have been barred from adopting a child – despite one of them being its birth mother.
Judges in Versailles refused a request this week by a lesbian woman to adopt the child who was conceived in Belgium by her partner through medically assisted procreation.
The landmark decision is the first of its kind since France legalised same-sex marriage and adoption rights for gay couples last year.
Currently in France methods of medically assisted procreation like IVF are reserved only for heterosexual couples.
But the lesbian couple assumed France’s reforms protected the rights of children conceived abroad using medically assisted procreation.
But it turns out the law was not as clear-cut as the couple believed and The Local reports it was left up to judges to decide their case.
In a major blow to LGBT rights, judges in Versailles turned down the couple’s request this week and said going abroad for assisted reproduction before seeking to adopt in France was a violation and “fraud of the law”.
The couple, along with LGBT rights campaigners, are horrified at the decision.
“I pulled the baby out of my partner’s womb. I cut the chord. I take him to school,” the aggrieved member of the couple told French reporters this week.
“Children of LGBT families are the new bastards of the Republic,” the group Inter-LGBT added.
The association of gay parents (ADFH) went even further calling the court “homophobic”.
The couple have vowed to appeal and say they will continue with plans to have a second child through medically assisted procreation abroad.
The government said the bill had not been dropped but only postponed until 2015 in the hope the atmosphere by then would be “more calm”.
Organisers of the homophobic protest group Manif pour Tous (Demo for All), which brought more than 100,000 people on to city streets days before in defence of what it described as the traditional family, claimed a victory after the announcement.