Japan’s leading opposition party has submitted a bill to legally recognise same-sex marriage in a bid to ignite debate on the issue in parliament.
The Constitutional Democratic Party (CDP) is proposing that the country’s Civil Code be amended as its current wording is based on the notion that marriage is a union between partners of different sexes.
The bill, which was submitted on 6 March, comes just two months ahead of Japan hosting the next G7 summit meeting in May. It is currently the only member of the intergovernmental political forum to not legally recognise same-sex marriage as the current government refuses to change its position on the matter.
Same-sex couples can currently engage in civil unions, though this is only possible in certain regions. Furthermore, they are unable to inherit assets or adopt as married heterosexual couples can. READ MORE: Japan’s Prime Minister issues an apology for his former aide’s anti-LGBTQ+ remarks In a parliamentary session on 1 March, Prime Minister Fumio Kishida called for further debate and said he is cautious about legalising same-sex unions as it “could change society as it concerns the lives of the people extensively”.