With this weeks great news that Switzerland overwhelmingly voted in favour to legalise same-sex marriage, could Japan not be far away?
One of the four leading candidates to take over as Prime Minster of Japan is an advocate for marriage equality. He is the leading contender to win the ruling party’s leadership vote on Wednesday and become premier.
Gon Matsunaka, an LGBTQ rights activist in Tokyo said: “It’s great that he (Kono) clearly supported same-sex marriage and it’s significant that this came from someone inside the LDP”
While same-sex marriage isn’t legal in Japan, there’s been a slow move towards acceptance of gay couples due to the media and a younger generation. A newspaper poll in March found that 65% of those quizzed supported gay marriage whilst only 22% were opposed.
Equal rights lawyer Makiko Terahara said of the move: “This shows the extent that the LGBTQ rights movement has moved forward here – same-sex marriage was just never raised as an issue in previous leadership races.”