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Klaus unlikely to sign homosexual partnership bill
PRAGUE, Feb 7 (CTK) - President Vaclav Klaus will most probably veto a bill on registered partnership that would allow the same-sex couples to enter an official partnership union, the daily Lidove noviny writes today, referring to sources close to Klaus.
If Klaus vetoes the bill, it will probably be swept under the carpet since it will be very difficult to find 101 deputies in the 200-member Chamber of Deputies to override Klaus's veto, the paper says.
A source close to Klaus told Lidove noviny on Monday that it "was practically out of the question" for the president to sign the bill.
However, "it is also out of the question that Klaus will not express his opinion on such an important law," the same source said.
Some advocates of the law hope that Klaus will pay no attention to it and it will thus take effect without his explicit consent.
"I must say that I am amazed that the government's Legislative Council and the legislative councils of the parliament intend to present something like this to the public," Klaus said about the bill on Monday.
However, he did not specify his final stance on the legislation saying that he still has time until next Thursday.
"It would be a gross and maybe the largest Klaus's mistake that would testify to the lack of open-mindedness," Prime Minister Jiri Paroubek (senior governing Social Democrats, CSSD) told Lidove noviny yesterday, reacting to Klaus's position.
"I firmly believe that this will not happen," he said.
Klaus has repeatedly voiced reservations about the legislation giving the right to conclude official partnership unions to the people of the same sex.
Klaus presented his disagreement with the legislation last February when it was debated by the Chamber of Deputies, the lower house of the Czech Parliament.
"I consider the marriage a traditional institution of one type. Let them arrange their relationship in any way. But I am absolutely against mixing this with family and marriage," Klaus said then.
If he signs it into law, the Czech Republic will be the first post-communist and 13th European country to embed homosexual partnership.
Supporters of the bill say the bill will make homosexual partners' life easier in contact with offices. The opponents say it threatens the maintenance of heterosexual family.
The bill defines the establishment and termination of a partnership union that will be entered in the identity card.
The bill ensures the partners' right to information on the health condition of their partners and a chance to inherit property as married couples.
The bill also counts with the obligation to pay maintenance and allows the homosexual partners to raise children, but it does not allow them to adopt them.