Defiant Rome mayor refuses to invalidate same-sex marriages
The Mayor of Rome has said he will defy a direct order to invalidate several same-sex marriages.
Italy is strongly Catholic, and lags behind the rest of Western Europe on gay rights – maintains a strictly-enforced ban on recognition of same-sex marriage.
Rome Mayor Ignazio Marino opted to challenge enforcement of the law this month, by recognising the marriages of 16 same-sex couples who had already wed as far afield as Spain, Portugal and the United States.
He has entered into a long-running feud with Interior minister Angelino Alfano over the issue – which is expected to lead to an inevitable legal showdown between the two.
Rome Prefect Giuseppe Pecoraro recently “invited” the mayor to void the marriages – but Mr Marino says he will not do so.
Mr Marino said: “We do not accept the prefect’s order to cancel the transcriptions that have already been logged.”
According to reports, Mayor of New York City Bill de Blasio contacted his fellow mayor to praise his “strong and courageous stance”, adding: “Keep going my friend, keep fighting the good fight”.
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