TV & Radio
伊で事実婚に夫婦並みの権利、同性同士も (共同 2007/02/09)
Pope worries about family after Italian government backs rights for unmarried couples
The Associated Press
Friday, February 9, 2007
Pope Benedict XVI expressed concern Friday about family identity after the Italian government proposed legislation to grant legal rights to unmarried heterosexual and same-sex couples.
The Vatican newspaper L'Osservatore Romano said the proposed law "wounded" the family as an institution.
"As pastor of the universal Church, I cannot help but express my concern about laws regarding very delicate questions, such as the transmission and defense of life, illness, family identity and respect for marriage," Benedict said.
On Thursday, Premier Romano Prodi's center-left coalition approved proposed legislation Thursday which would grant legal rights to unmarried couples who live together.
A Christian Democrat minister boycotted the Cabinet meeting in protest, and the Italian bishops conference newspaper, Avvenire, said the family was 'under siege."
The pope has been leading a Church drive against legal recognition for unmarried couples, which he contends would threaten the family as a fundamental institution of society. He has also campaigned vigorously against any efforts to allow gays to marry, and in a speech Friday to Colombia's new ambassador to the Holy See, Benedict said the Vatican would keep up its campaigns.
"The Catholic Church will continue to proclaim ceaselessly the inalienable greatness of human dignity," Benedict said, referring to his campaign which insists that families must be based on marriage between a man and a woman.
He called on lay faithful who serve in legislatures or in governmental or judicial roles to ensure that "laws always are the expression of principles and values which conform to natural law and which promote the authentic common good."
Benedict made no direct reference to Italy, but the Vatican newspaper entitled its article Friday on the Cabinet's approval for unmarried couples' rights "The wounded family."
Prodi, whose coalition ranges from centrists to Communists, told AP Television News in an interview Friday that he did not expect trouble from the Vatican about the proposed legislation.
"It's wise and intelligent," Prodi said about the proposed law.
If the law is passed by the Italian Parliament, unmarried couples would have to live together for nine years before acquiring inheritance rights that married couples have immediately, but they would enjoy other rights must sooner, such as taking over rental leases and deciding medical treatment should a partner become incapacitated.
Pope worried about family values
Church attacks Italian bill on cohabiting couples
VATICAN CITY (ANSA) - Pope Benedict XVI voiced worry about new laws regarding marriage and the family on Friday, a day after the Italian government approved a draft law giving legal recognition to gay and unmarried couples.
The pontiff was speaking to the Colombian ambassador and his remarks clearly referred to a decision this week by that country's constitutional court, which gave gay couples the same inheritance rights as heterosexual ones.
But Benedict's words reverberated strongly in Italy, where he and top Catholic figures have repeatedly expressed alarm over the campaign in the country to legally recognise unmarried couples. "I cannot fail to express my concern over laws regarding delicate questions such as the transmission of life, illness, the identity of the family and respect for marriage," Benedict told Ambassador Juan Gomez Martinez.
The pontiff appealed to lawmakers and members of the judiciary to see that laws were always "the expression of values which conform to natural law and which promote the authentic common good".
On Thursday, the centre-left government of Romano Prodi greenlighted a bill which recognises relations between cohabiting gays and unmarried heterosexual couples, granting rights in areas like inheritance and health care.
The bill, which must still be approved by parliament, was a compromise between left-wingers in the government and Catholic-oriented centrists. But it still went too far for some Catholics in the centre left. Justice Minister Clemente Mastella, head of the Udeur party, deserted the cabinet meeting which approved the bill. The Catholic Church opposes the bill because it says legally recognising unmarried couples undermines Christian marriage and traditional family values.
The Vatican daily Osservatore Romano carried the news on Friday under a headline reading: Family Harmed as DICO Arrives.
SIR, Italian bishops' news agency, produced a stinging appraisal of the draft law on Friday, saying it would produce "problems more serious than those it sets out to tackle".
DICO OR PACS?.
The government's proposals, referred to as DICO (Diritti di coppie conviventi - Rights for cohabiting couples), falls short of the civil unions introduced in France, Britain and Spain in recent years.
Gay rights campaigners and hard leftists in Prodi's coalition wanted a more far-reaching measure, akin to the PACS (Civil Solidarity Pacts) legislation in France.
SIR said the Italian solution was a step on the way to gay marriages. "People are talking about DICO but they're imagining PACS and a legislative process in this direction," it said.
According to recent statistics, there are about 560,000 cohabiting couples in Italy. The figure has risen steadily in recent years as the number of marriages, both civil and religious has fallen.
The DICO bill would give cohabiting partners inheritance rights after nine years of living together and alimony rights after three. If specific provision was made beforehand, it would also allow one partner in a couple to take decisions on funeral arrangements and organ donation when the other died.
The bill could be modified when it goes to parliament in coming weeks. The centre-right opposition has promised a battle and several centre-left MPs have talked about "improvements".
But Deputy Premier Francesco Rutelli said any changes would be slight and that there would be "no surprises".
Despite the grumbles of hard leftists and the reservations of Catholics, the government has said it will not call a do-or-die confidence vote on the bill in order to force possible dissenters into line. Although Prodi's coalition has only a razor-thin majority in the Senate, the bill is expected to have the support of some centre-right senators whose votes could compensate for defections in the centre left.
♪ 当ブログではこの先、「DICO (Diritti di coppie conviventi - 同居カップルの権利) 法案」と記載します。