Kosovo’s new Civil Code, currently in draft form, opens the way for same-sex marriages, Justice Minister Selim Selimi told a press conference on July 7.
According to Selimi, the draft of the new Civil Code will regulate some issues that have been unresolved in Kosovo for many years. These include the possibility of regulating property relations within marriage through the marriage contract, as well as opening the possibility for same-sex marriages.
"The traditional aspect of marriage has been preserved ... but it opens the way for same-sex marriages,” Selimi said.
Selimi said that the Civil Code will be sent to the parliament soon and is expected to get support from lawmakers, according to Gazeta Express.
The project on the Civil Code was supported by the European Union. Several EU countries helped Kosovo to draft the law over the last few years.
The new code, according to Selimi, will also help women to gain equal rights to inherit property. Same-sex marriage will be regulated with a special law within the code.
“For the first time ever, the new legal framework paves the way for civil union through marriage of the same-sex couples,” Selimi was cited as saying.
In 2014, the president of the Constitutional Court said that Kosovo de jure allows gay marriages.
US special envoy for Kosovo and Serbia Richard Grenell welcomed Selimi’s announcement on July 8.
In a tweet Grenell said “Kosovo legalizes gay marriage.Thank you, @selim_selimi.”
Montenegro’s parliament legalised same-sex civil partnerships on July 1, becoming the first Western Balkan state to legally recognise same-sex couples.
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