Question for oral answer to the Council Rule 115 Ulrike Lunacek, Jean Lambert, Rui Tavares, Raül Romeva i Rueda, on behalf of the Verts/ALE Group
Subject: New Romanian Civil Code and free movement of LGBT persons
Article 277 of the new Civil Code of Romania (RCC), which entered into force on 1 October 2011, deals with the ‘Prohibition of forms of cohabitation and of their equivalence with marriage’(1).
- Does the Council agree that the explicit prohibition of same-sex marriage (Article 277(1) RCC) or partnership or of their recognition when contracted abroad (Article 277(2) and (3) RCC) in civil codes or constitutions, targets same-sex couples and persons on the basis of their sexual orientation and cements such discrimination in the fundamental laws of the State?
- Does the Council agree that the explicit prohibition of the recognition of same-sex marriages and of civil partnerships, both of the opposite sex or the same sex, contracted abroad (Article 277(2) and (3) 277 RCC), regardless of references to the free movement provisions (Article 277(4) RCC), runs counter to EU citizens’ fundamental right to carry their civil status with them when moving from Member State A to Member state B under Article 2(2) of Directive 2004/38/EC on the free movement of EU citizens and their family members?
- Does the Council agree that the new Civil Code creates a situation of legal uncertainty and contradiction between Article 277(1), (2) and (3) RCC on the one hand and Article 277(4) RCC on the other, as the application of Article 2 of Directive 2004/38/EC defining family members (which includes ‘spouse’) and of Article 3 on the duty of facilitation of entry and residence could be nullified or applied in such a way as to deny free movement of same-sex spouses and partners and of opposite-sex partners, on the basis of the recognition prohibition?
- How will the Council guarantee that the provisions of Article 277 of the new Civil Code of Romania are not contrary to the values and spirit of the Treaties and of the principles of equality and non-discrimination?
- How will the Council guarantee that the rights of EU citizens and their families are respected and not risk creating an intolerant and homophobic climate, as well as further tensions on, and repercussions for, the right to free movement of EU citizens, including Romanians, in the EU?
Article 277 RCC states: ‘(1) Same-sex marriage is prohibited. (2) Same-sex marriages concluded or contracted abroad, either by Romanian or foreign citizens, are not recognized in Romania. (3) Civil partnerships between persons of the opposite sex or same sex, concluded or contracted abroad, either by Romanian or foreign citizens, are not recognised in Romania. (4) Legal provisions on free movement of citizens in Romania, for citizens from EU Member States and from the European Economic Area, remain applicable.’