16:15 31.12.2013

National governments, not EU establish family laws, says EU Delegation in Ukraine

The European Union does not establish laws regarding family and does not interfere in matters of morality, which are in competence of national governments, the EU Delegation in Ukraine said.

The delegation said this in a press release issued on Tuesday, in which it clarifies some important aspects of the EU-Ukraine Association Agreement.

According to the delegation, the EU does not set family laws or get involved in moral issues. This remains an issue for national governments.

"While some EU members decided to legalize same sex marriages, in others marriage is defined as a union between a man and a woman. Ukraine agreed with the EU a set of laws to be adopted in order to allow visa liberalization. This includes anti-discrimination laws, but these have nothing to do with rules on marriage," the press release reads.

What is required from Ukraine to advance on the path towards visa liberalization is to adopt legislation against all types of discrimination at the working place, similar to the EU rules in this field, the EU delegation said.

As reported, Ukrainian Premier Mykola Azarov said on December 14 that in order to get a visa free regime with the European Union, Ukraine should allow same sex marriage and pass the equality act for sexual minorities.

"Opposition leaders tell tales that if we sign the [Association] Agreement [with the EU] we'll start traveling to Europe without visas next day. Nothing of the kind. We are to comply with the following conditions: we're to allow same sex marriages and we're to pass the equality act," he said at a rally of supporters of the Party of Regions on the European Square in Kyiv.

The premier said that Ukrainians are not prepared for his. In addition, the church opposes such steps.

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