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Czech Parliament Approves Same-Sex Partnerships

Czech President Vaclav Klaus says the new law interferes in people's personal lives (file photo) (CTK) March 15, 2006 -- The Czech lower house of parliament today voted to approve a law allowing same-sex partnerships, overriding a presidential veto.

The law allows same-sex couples to officially register, and terminate, their relationships. It allows partners to inherit property, and also allows same-sex couples to raise, but not adopt children.

The lower house had approved the bill last year, but President Vaclav Klaus vetoed it saying it increased state regulation in personal relations.

Today, 101 lawmakers in the 200-seat parliament backed the bill, giving it the absolute majority needed to override the presidential veto.

Klaus suggested today's vote was "a pre-election gesture."

Czechs go to the polls in a general election in June.

(Reuters, AFP, CTK)