Malta Passes Divorce Legislation

Posted July 25th, 2011 at 11:30 am (UTC-5)
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Citizens of Malta will be allowed to  get divorced in their country after the country’s parliament overwhelmingly voted in favor of the legislation.

Monday’s vote followed a national referendum on May 28 in which 53-percent of the voters in the Mediterranean island nation cast “yes” votes for the legislation. About 95-percent of the country identifies itself as Roman Catholic.

The vote is seen as a blow to the ruling Nationalist Party which had opposed the divorce legislation, and to Prime Minister Lawrence Gonzi, who voted against passage of the law.

The law is scheduled to go into effect in October, after an expected signature from Malta’s president.

Under the old law, Maltese couples could only legally separate and did not have a right to remarry unless their previous marriage was annulled. Many citizens went abroad in order to obtain a divorce.