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Catholic man seeking to marry Muslim girlfriend challenges legal hurdles for interfaith marriage

Coconuts Jakarta - February 7, 2022

A Catholic man is on a mission for love and the recognition of interfaith marriage in Indonesia, after he filed a judicial review against a legal hurdle for marrying his Muslim girlfriend.

Papua citizen Ramos Petange filed a judicial review with the Constitutional Court (MK) challenging Article 2 Verse 1 of the Marriage Law, which says that a marriage is valid "if conducted according to laws of religion and belief of both parties."

"After being in a relationship for three years and with the intention of marrying, the marriage had to be canceled because the two parties are of different religions," court documents obtained from MK's website said about Ramos' circumstances.

Ramos is arguing that faith shouldn't play a part in whether or not the state recognizes the union between two people, as religion is "the right between an individual and their God Almighty."

He also argued that the interfaith marriage restrictions go against the Human Rights Law, which guarantees one's right to start a family from a valid marriage – described as a union that is carried out willingly and without coercion from either party.

Ramos may find the odds stacked against him, as MK rejected a judicial review for interfaith marriage in 2015. The court argued then that religions play an essential role in preserving the sanctity of marriage.

MK has not set a date to deliver their decision on Ramos' judicial review.

Source: https://coconuts.co/jakarta/news/catholic-man-seeking-to-marry-muslim-girlfriend-challenges-legal-hurdles-for-interfaith-marriage