Prime Minister Zoran Milanovic

Croatia’s prime minister has revealed that his government is planning to introduce legislation to legalise same-sex relationships.

According to the Associated Press, Prime Minister Zoran Milanovic told reporters that “we are talking about registered partnerships, which is a somewhat higher standard than what we have now.”

This was one of his Social Democratic Party’s promises in the parliamentary elections in December.

“That was our program. I hope that the people of Croatia accept it, it’s simply a form of social empathy and decency and expanding freedom,” Milanovic said.

Gay couples are currently recognised under the law only as people who are cohabiting.

The conservative opposition Croatian Democratic Union has rejected plans to give further legal recognition to same-sex couples.

Homosexuality is legal in Croatia and discrimination and hate crimes on the basis of sexual orientation are outlawed.

Last year, a Pride march in Split – Croatia’s second-largest city – had to be cancelled after protestors threw rocks and other objects at participants. The police were slammed by Amnesty International for not giving the march appropriate protection.

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