In Moscow, an Attempt to Wed Pushes Gay Rights
Posted on May 15, 2009
Filed Under Uncategorized
MOSCOW — They knew they had no chance. But there they were anyway at a marriage registration office in Moscow on Tuesday. Two young women, wearing tuxedos and clutching bouquets, trying to become the first same-sex couple in Russia to legally wed.
“We have love, we have happiness, we want to be together for our whole lives and we want to do this here in Russia,” said Irina Fedotova, who hoped to marry her longtime partner, Irina Shipitko.
In a country where the push for gay rights has materialized only recently — and in fits and starts often met with violence and arrests — their attempt to marry was a bold, if muted, political statement as much as it was an expression of love.
The unsurprising response from the official at the registration office was dry and unequivocal. “According to article 12 of the family codex, for a marriage to be sanctioned it is necessary to have the mutual and voluntary agreement of a man and a woman.”
Both women said they had expected their marriage application to be rejected and said they would appeal the decision.
Their attempt to marry was meant in part to draw attention to gay rights in Russia as thousands of Europeans flood Moscow for the Eurovision song contest.
Gay rights groups plan a demonstration in Moscow Saturday, the day of the Eurovision final. See In Moscow, an Attempt to Wed Pushes Gay Rights New York Times * Tags = gay men gay news lesbian news transgender bisexual
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