A growing number of countries are ushering in progressive marriage equality laws, following in the footsteps of France, Spain and Britain.

Boris Dittrich, advocacy director for the LGBT Rights Programme at Human Rights Watch (HRW) hailed one week in late June as ‘a landmark week for marriage equality’.

It saw German lawmakers agree a proposal to allow same-sex marriage following a free vote – a surprise move by the socially conservative Chancellor Angela Merkel, who herself voted against. The landmark win provides a counterpoint to what HRW describes as the country’s ‘virulent’ homophobic reputation.

Over in traditionally Catholic Malta, the recently re-elected Prime Minister Joseph Muscat proposed a similar bill. If passed, the law would also see gendered terminology scrapped from legal documents, such as ‘husband’ and ‘wife’. Both reforms were rolled out the same week as Serbia appointed its first female, openly gay Prime Minister – Ana Brnabic.

Kelsi Farrington