Taiwan has legalized same-sex marriage, making it the first country in Asia to do so, according to Bloomberg.
Marriage being defined as only between man and woman was ruled unconstitutional by Taiwan’s top court two years ago. Then, the court set a deadline of May 24, 2019 for the country to introduce legislation legalizing it.
The president of Taiwan Tsai Ing-wen and her Democratic Progressive Party voted the legalization of same-sex marriage into law on Friday (May 17) – only one week before the deadline decided by the court.
“Today, we have a chance to make history and show the world that progressive values can take root in an East Asian society,” the President tweeted ahead of the vote. “Today, we can show the world that love wins.”
More than 40,000 people gathered outside of the legislature in the nation’s capital of Taipei in support of the legislation.
— Silva Shih 史書華 (@silvashih) May 17, 2019
Not everyone in the country supports the new law. The victory for Taiwan’s LGBTQ community comes after a referendum from last November where 72 percent of voters voted against same-sex marriage.
“It’s a bot of a regret that this amendment isn’t in line with the referendum,” said Foxconn Technology Group’s founder Terry Gou, who has announced he will run for President of the country. “But Taiwan is a country ruled by law. I respect it.”
The law is set to be implemented on May 24.