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The same-sex marriage law did not permit adoption by same-sex partners, and as birth within a same-sex marriage did not imply affiliation, the same-sex spouse of the biological parent had no way to become the legal parent.
The election programmes of the SP (Flemish Social Democrats), Agalev (Flemish Greens) and VLD (Flemish liberals) for the 13 June 1999 elections included the aim to legalise same-sex marriage.
The new Verhofstadt I Government was formed, which was notably made up of a coalition of liberal, socialist and green parties and excluded the long-dominant Christian democrats, who lost the elections due to the Dioxin Affair.
Their main argument held that treating fundamentally different situations the same way, violates the equality principle of the Constitution.
Originally, Belgium allowed the marriages of foreign same-sex couples only if their country of origin also allowed these unions.
Nevertheless, new momentum was gained at the start of the new parliamentary year in October 2002.
The Senate Justice Committee held hearings and voted 11–4 to approve the bill.
King Albert II signed and promulgated the bill on 13 February 2003 and on 28 February it was published in the Belgian Official Journal and came into force on 1 June.
The first paragraph of article 143 of the Belgian Civil Code (Book I, Title V, Chapter I) now reads as follows: In November 2003, opponents of same-sex marriage petitioned the Arbitration Court to invalidate the law as unconstitutional.
The coalition agreement included "implementing a full legal partnership scheme" as well as "immediately making the Act of 23 November 1998 enter into force", which had not been done yet.
During 1999, the PS (French-speaking Social Democrats) and Ecolo (French-speaking Greens) also announced they agreed to legalise same-sex marriage.
On 30 November 2001, however, the Council of State gave a negative legal opinion on the bill, saying that "marriage is defined as the union of a man and a woman".Tags: Adult Dating, affair dating, sex dating