Belfast, Northern Ireland, Aug 22, 2017 / 08:54 am
Northern Ireland's High Court has rejected two legal challenges that sought to recognize same-sex unions as marriages, saying it is a matter for the legislature.
Justice John O'Hara said that European law allows governments to introduce "gay marriage," but does not require it.
Lawyers for several couples had argued that the Northern Ireland law violates Article Eight of the European Convention on Human Rights and denied respect for their clients' private and family lives, BBC News reports.
Any further action is affected by the political crisis in Stormont, the Northern Ireland legislature. A power-sharing agreement between Sinn Fein and the Democratic Unionist Party collapsed in January 2017, after more than 10 years of joint rule between nationalist and unionist politicians.