Angela Merkel says gay unions cannot be called marriage


Angela Merkel (YouTube / LeFloid)

German leader Angela Merkel says she does not believe that a union between people of the same sex can be described as a marriage.

Merkel, who’s been criticised by some for her hard-line stance towards Greece’s economic woes, made the comments in an interview with YouTube personality Florian Mundt.

“I’m someone who is very supportive of us eliminating all discrimination,” she said about LGBT rights.

“We have come a long way. I remember, 25 years ago, many people didn’t dare to say that they are gay or lesbian. Luckily we’ve overcome this and you can enter a partnership, a civil partnership.”

However, Merkel, 60, was quick to add: “For me, personally, marriage is a man and a woman living together. That is my concept, but I support civil partnerships.”

Florian pushed back and asked: “So you would say: ‘no to discrimination, but we’ll keep differentiating between the two?'”

Merkel insisted: “No discrimination… [but] marriage is a man and a woman living together.”

Her position is out of touch with popular opinion in Germany; up to 75% of the public is in favour of marriage equality.

Registered life partnerships for German same-sex couples were implemented in 2001, offering most, but not all, of the same rights as heterosexual marriages.

The German government said in May that it had no plans to follow in Ireland’s footsteps after a referendum in that country legalised same-sex marriage.

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