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ROME (Sputnik) – Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi on Wednesday responded to the Vatican’s complaint against the anti-homophobia draft law, which aims to protect the LGBT community, saying that the country’s parliament has the right to freely discuss and pass laws as a secular state.
“Our state is a secular state. We are not a confessional state, therefore the parliament can freely discuss and pass any laws,” Draghi told the parliament.
On Tuesday, the Holy See sent a diplomatic note to the Italian government protesting the draft law on the protection of the LGBT community from hatred and violence.
Draghi noted that Italian legislation ensures compliance with all constitutional principles and international obligations, including the concordat with the Church.
“The principle of secularity … does not imply the indifference of the State to religions but rather a guarantee of State protection of the freedom of religion, in a regime of confessional and cultural pluralism,” the prime minister read out a clause from the Italian Constitutional Court’s judgment of 1989.
The Holy See, in turn, believes that the law violates the Lateran Pacts, which regulate relations between the Roman Catholic Church and the Italian state. In the letter to the Italian government, the Vatican has also asked to amend the provisions of the bill, as it jeopardizes the civil liberties of Catholic believers.