A European Court of Justice advocate
general has advised that European Union member states must recognize
the rights of same-sex spouses, even if a country has not extended
marriage rights to gay and lesbian couples.
According to The
Guardian, Melchior Wathelet, a Belgian advocate general in
the Luxembourg court, said that all EU members must recognize the
rights of gay spouses.
Such opinions are non-binding but are
normally followed by the court, the paper wrote.
The Luxembourg court is currently
deliberating in the case of a Romanian national, Adrian Coman, whose
American husband, Claibourn Robert Hamilton, was refused residence in
Romania based on the couple's 2010 marriage in Brussels. A decision
is expected in the coming months.
Romania is one of the six EU member
states that do not recognize the unions of gay couples. The other
nations include Poland, Slovakia, Bulgaria, Lithuania and Latvia.