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Tajikistan: Fines for Language Mistakes

(Sept. 26, 2016) On August 1, 2016, the State Committee on Language and Terminology under Tajikistan’s Cabinet of Ministers announced that it will issue fines for violating Tajik language norms and using words in the Farsi language that are not clearly understood by the audience of print and broadcast media. The fine will be in […]

Aruba: Same-Sex Partnerships Recognized by Law

(Sept. 23, 2016) On September 8, 2016, the Parliament of Aruba, one of the constituent countries that comprise the Kingdom of the Netherlands, voted to amend the Aruban Civil Code provisions on marriage so as to officially recognize same-sex registered partnerships. The amendment will give same-sex couples the same benefits granted to married partners under […]

Papua New Guinea: Changes to Marriage Laws to be Introduced

(Aug. 23, 2016) On August 22, 2016, it was reported that the Papua New Guinea government will soon introduce legislation to amend the country’s marriage and divorce laws.  (Nellie Setepano, PNG Marriage Laws to Be Amended as Part of Reform Bundle to Legally Recognize Traditional Marriage and Protect Minors, PNG POST-COURIER (Aug. 22, 2016).)  Two […]

Australia: State Legislation to Remove Barriers to Changing Sex on Birth Certificate

(Aug. 22, 2016) On August 18, 2016, the Attorney-General of the Australian State of Victoria introduced the Births, Deaths and Marriages Registration Amendment Bill 2016 in the state parliament.  The bill “removes the need for applicants to have undergone sex affirmation surgery before being able to apply for a new birth certificate.”  (Press Release, Martin […]

Cameroon: Revision of Adultery Law

(June 30, 2016) On June 22, 2016, the lower house of the Parliament of Cameroon voted to amend the country’s criminal provisions on adultery. (Matthew Santiago, Cameroon Parliament Votes for Gender-Balanced Adultery, PAPER CHASE (June 26, 2016).) While the Penal Code had already penalized adultery as a crime for both men and women, responsibility was […]

Switzerland: Rejection of Abolishment of Marriage Tax Penalty and Constitutional Definition of Marriage

(Mar. 11, 2016) On February 28, 2016, Swiss voters rejected by a narrow vote of 50.8% to 49.2% a referendum to abolish the marriage tax penalty in Swiss law. (Vorlage Nr. 596, Vorläufige amtliche Endergebnisse [Initiative No. 596, Preliminary Official Results], Schweizerische Bundeskanzlei [Swiss Federal Chancellery] website (Feb. 28, 2016).) The “marriage penalty” refers to tax provisions […]

Pakistan: Hindu Marriage Bill Passed in Sindh Legislature

(Feb. 25, 2016) On February 15, 2016, the Provincial Assembly of Sindh passed the Hindu Marriage Bill 2016, applicable to Hindus and other non-Muslim citizens. It is reportedly the first of its kind in Pakistan. (Hafeez Tunio, Sindh Assembly Becomes First in Pakistan to Pass Hindu Marriage Bill, EXPRESS TRIBUNE (Feb. 15, 2016).) Similar draft […]

Egypt: Ministerial Resolution Regulating the Marriage of Egyptian Women to Foreigners

(Feb. 11, 2016) In December 2015, the Egyptian Minister of Justice issued Ministerial Regulation No. 9200 of 2015 to regulate the registration process for marriage contracts between Egyptian women and foreign men. The new Regulation relates to Law No. 103 of 1976 on the same subject. (Ministerial Regulation No. 9200 of 2015, 278 AL WAQA’A […]

Pakistan: Child Marriage Bill Withdrawn

(Jan. 25, 2016) On January 14, 2016, Pakistan’s National Assembly Standing Committee on Religious Affairs and Interfaith Harmony met to discuss the Child Marriage Restraint (Amendment) Bill 2014.  According to a press release, the bill, which was moved by National Assembly Member Marvi Memon, was withdrawn at the end of the discussion. (Press Release, National […]

Estonia: Legalization of Civil Partnerships

(Jan. 14, 2016) On January 1, 2016, the Registered Partnership Law, which had been passed by the Estonian Parliament in 2014, entered into force. The enforcement of the Law was delayed by the need to pass implementing regulations and amend existing legislation. (Registered Partnership Act (Oct. 9, 2014), RIIGI TEATAJA [OFFICIAL GAZETTE] (Oct. 16, 2014), […]