Lauri Hussar, the president of Estonia’s parliament, has vowed to introduce legislation legalising same-sex marriage “in two or three weeks”.
If passed, the country would become the first Baltic state to implement such laws.
When asked if this could be the case, he told Lithuanian National Radio and Television (LRT) that more will become clear “in probably four weeks”.
“I hope so, because we have the Liberal government, we have the liberal Reform Party, we have the social democrats, and I am myself from the party Estonia 200,” he continued. “We are the only party which has same-sex marriage in our programme. So, therefore, I think we’re going to do it.”
Hussar, who has been President of the Riigikogu since April, also referenced the latest public opinion polls, which he said show “more than 50 percent of Estonians are supporting same-sex marriage.”
“So it is not an issue like it has been six, or seven years ago, the mood has changed,” he added. “And I think the mood has changed also, because of what happened in Ukraine, because the war brought us to the real problems and what is really important for us. It united us in helping Ukraine and also brought us to the roots of liberal democracy and therefore, I think it brought us to think about what is important for us as a society.”
He noted that, despite this, legalising same-sex marriage continues to be divisive among “the church and the conservatives”.
“We hope to adopt the law before July”
“I want to point out one very interesting thing, that in every society where same-sex marriage has been legalised, it hasn’t been any issues anymore, because the issue has been closed and the society moved forward,” Hussar further explained.
“And almost everybody felt that now it is a little bit more equal society than before. And I think this is what we have to do, because if we were making the civil partnership decision, then there is still another decision ahead, the same-sex marriage decision, and you will have to make it anyway. So why make two steps? And anyway, it is too political. […] We hope to adopt the law before July, to make it once, I think it is reasonable enough.”
An opinion poll conducted in 2023 found that 75 per cent of Estonians support anti-discrimination laws that protect LGBTQ+ people, while 53 per cent said they are in favour of same-sex marriage.
More than seven in 10 (71 per cent) also showed their support for civil partnerships.