Gay couple mulls going to court over EU rights

23rd August 2004, Comments 0 comments

23 August 2004 , VIENNA - A same-sex couple may go to the European Court over being prevented from living in Austria, said the gay lobbying group Hosi on Monday. General Secretary Kurt Krickler said the couple, with one German and a US partner, had been married in the Netherlands. However, the marriage was not recognized by the Austrian state. When the German man decided to move to Austria, his non-EU American partner was refused Austrian residence and working permits. "That's a clear violation of EU law

23 August 2004   

VIENNA - A same-sex couple may go to the European Court over being prevented from living in Austria, said the gay lobbying group Hosi on Monday.

General Secretary Kurt Krickler said the couple, with one German and a US partner, had been married in the Netherlands. However, the marriage was not recognized by the Austrian state.

When the German man decided to move to Austria, his non-EU American partner was refused Austrian residence and working permits. "That's a clear violation of EU law", said Krickler.

He said that any EU citizen settling in another EU country had the right to bring along his or her married partner, even if the partner was a citizen of an outside country.

It was also forbidden by the EU Charter to discriminate on grounds of sexual orientation, and the European Human Rights Convention also guaranteed respect for private and family life, Krickler said.

First the case would be taken to the Austrian Constitutional Court, said Krickler. In the event of a negative decision there, "we're confident of getting justice either at the EU Court in Luxembourg, or at the latest at the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg."

Krickler cautioned however that even a positive outcome of the courtcases "will not oblige Austria to introduce lesbian and homosexual marriages for its citizens".

DPA

Subject: German news

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