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HUMAN RIGHTS

Catholic Church issues statement on gay marraige

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The Family Code defines the parameters of marraige in Panama. The Family Code defines the parameters of marraige in Panama.
The Family Code defines the parameters of marraige in Panama. LA PRENSA/Archivo

The Panamanian Episcopal Conference today commented on the pending case before the Supreme Court that call for recognition of equal marriage in Panamanian legislation. 

The conference, which brings together the bishops of the country's Catholic Church, believes that recognizing gay marraige is not necessary "to effectively protect the rights of same-sex persons."

The two claims of unconstitutionality that are before the court were presented by the firm Morgan & Morgan. In one, it is requested that the phrase "between a man and a woman" in article 26 of the Family Code be defined as unconstitutional. 

The second complaint requests the declaration of unconstitutionality of article 26 and articles 34 and 35 of the Family Code. All prohibit same-sex marriage. 

The Panamanian Episcopal Conference says it shares the state's obligation to eliminate all forms of unfair discrimination.

"However, it is one thing to legally regulate unions between persons of the same sex in the field of civil and patrimonial rights and another, very different, is to want to offer to these unions a legal recognition as marriages," the conference said in a press release. 

"In our country the Panamanian family lives in a deep crisis...Let us not add another element to destabilize it. Marriage is not a purely an affective union, it is also a natural and juridical union, oriented to the procreation, to the education of the children and to the mutual aid between the spouses," it remarked.

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