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South Korea

South Korean government rejects visa request from same-sex marriage couple

Justice ministry says a national consensus on same-sex marriage is needed

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 06 June, 2018, 11:09am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 06 June, 2018, 11:09am

By Jung Min-ho

The South Korean government has declined to issue a marriage immigration visa (F-6) to a British man who married his Korean male partner in Britain three years ago.

The Ministry of Justice said Sunday it recently turned down Simon Williams-Im’s request for the visa, saying Korean laws do not recognise same-sex marriages.

“Whether a nation or a society accepts, same-sex marriage needs a careful and comprehensive consideration of many factors, such as interpretation of constitutional values regarding the definition of marriage … And it requires national consensus,” the ministry said in response to Williams-Im after he sent his request to President Moon Jae-in.

Same-sex marriages and civil unions are not legally recognised here, though some members of the National Assembly proposed a bill to legalise such partnerships several years ago.

In a highly publicised case, actor Kim Jho Gwang-soo and his male partner Kim Seung-hwan filed a lawsuit in 2013 after the Seodaemun District Office in Seoul declined to accept their marriage registration, only to be rejected by the Seoul Western District Court in 2016.

Read the original article at The Korea Times