The marriages of same-sex couples will not be recognised by Italy if the marriage celebration took place in a foreign country. Foreign Affairs Minister Angelino Alfano announced that he would sign a decision on it and send it to the municipalities.
Mr Alfano said that marriages between people of the same sex are in opposition to Italian law. By stating this, he is correcting mayors who registered foreign gay marriages. One of those mayors is Virginio Merola of Bologna. Earlier, Milan's city council asked Mayor Giuliano Pisapia to also register foreign gay marriages.
In a reaction to Minister Alfano's statement, Virginio Merola said that he has no intention of withdrawing his signature from these gay marriages. "If they (the government) want to make the registration of these foreign gay marriages null and void, they should go ahead. I will not withdraw my signature. They can do as they please, but not in the name of Bologna, which I represent as the mayor. I will not comply," the mayor said according to the newspaper La Repubblica.
Earlier this year, a judge had ruled a same-sex marriage that was performed in New York as legal. In Italy, gay marriages are not officially recognized. In 2012, a 68-year-old architect and a 57-year-old journalist got married. At first, their marriage was not recognized in Italy, but the Grosetto court summoned the civil registry officials to register the marriage.
The civil registry does not include references to the definition of gender, and therefore, the homosexual couple also needs to be registered. With his decision on foreign marriages, Minister Angelino Alfano wants to end the ambiguity.