A strong majority in staunchly Catholic Croatia has voted to outlaw same-sex marriage in a referendum sought by a Church-backed group but strongly opposed by rights groups. A total of 64.84 per cent of voters said ‘yes’ to the question of whether they wanted to amend the constitution to include a definition of marriage as a ‘union between a woman and a man’, according to partial results from around one-third of polling stations released by the electoral commission on Sunday. Croatia’s current constitution does not define marriage. A total of 34.56 per cent of voters said ‘no’, the results showed.
Passions ran high in Croatia ahead of the vote, with the Church-backed ‘yes’ camp citing the defence of traditional family values, and their opponents accusing them of discrimination against gays.
However, three hours before voting ended, the turnout was a rather low 26.75 per cent, the electoral commission said.
Under Croatian law, a referendum does not require a majority voter turnout to be valid.
The centre-left government, rights activists and prominent public figures have all spoken out against the measure.
But the recent unveiling of a government bill enabling gay couples to register as ‘life partners’ sparked fears among conservatives in Croatia – which joined the EU in July – that same-sex marriage would be next.
Full Article: Croatia rejects same-sex marriage | Sky News Australia.