Italy’s right-wing Deputy Prime Minister Matteo Salvini has ordered the wording on some official forms changed so that same-sex couples cannot both declare themselves as a child’s parents.
Salvini, interior minister and leader of the anti-immigrant League party, is now the Italy’s most favoured politician, according to some surveys, and his socially conservative policies have proven popular among voters so far.
In an interview with a Catholic online newspaper, Salvini said that he had ordered the identity card application forms for children to be changed to refer to the “mother and father” instead of “parent 1” and “parent 2”.
“We will defend the natural family founded on the union between a man and a woman. I will exert all the power possible,” Salvini told La Nuova Bussola Quotidiana.
In Italy surrogate pregnancies are illegal and same-sex couples cannot adopt children.
However, some courts and city halls have granted parental status to the partner of a mother or father who had children by a previous relationship, even though the right is not enshrined in national law.
Salvini said that the government would never contemplate surrogate pregnancies “or similar horrors”.
Support for the League, which governs with the anti-establishment 5-Star Movement (M5S), has surged from 17% of the vote at a March national election, to around 30% in recent opinion polls.
The less hardline M5S, on the other hand, has held steady at about 30%.
Salvini’s refusal to take in migrants rescued at sea by humanitarian ships has drawn criticism from some Roman Catholic factions because Pope Francis has made compassion toward refugees and migrants a plank of his papacy.
As a result, last month a popular Christian magazine comparing Salvini to Satan on its front cover.
However, a recent Ipsos poll showed support for Salvini among Catholics who attend mass at least once a week has doubled, reaching almost 32% in July from just under 16% in March.
The previous centre-left government passed a law granting limited rights to same sex couples in “civil unions” two years ago.
After taking power in June, the League’s minister for the family, Lorenzo Fontana, caused a stir when he said that as far as he was concerned, “rainbow families don’t exist”.
Fontana, known for his conservative Catholic views, has also called for the repeal of the current law which punishes racial and religious discrimination.
On another issue, Salvini told the website he would try to crack down on shops selling legal cannabis products that have no psychoactive effects, which have become widespread in Italy.
“These shops seem like Chinese massage centres that disguise fully-fledged brothels,” he said.
Salvini promised to find a compromise with the health minister, who is from M5S and who he said took a different view to him on the matter.
LEAVE A COMMENT Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked*
EU parliament to start ratifying Brexit deal next week
Rescuers 'fearing worst' over plane carrying football star
Russian passenger detained for attempting to hijack plane to Moscow
Keep humans in good jobs in the robot era, ILO commission urges
EU fines Mastercard 570 mn euros in anti-trust action
UN appoints Kuwait's Rola Dashti as ESCWA Chief
Ronaldo faces multi-million tax fraud fine in Madrid court
At least 10 dead as fire rages on Black Sea ships
Gatwick drone disruption cost easyJet nearly $20 mn