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Dutch royal family can marry same-sex partner without giving up crown


AMSTERDAM – In the country that first legalized same-sex marriage, the Dutch crown princess has the right to marry a person of any gender without giving up her right to the throne, the prime minister said on Tuesday.

Crown Princess Catharina-Amalia, 17, has not commented on it and little is known about her personal life. The question arose after recently published books argued that the country’s rules ruled out the possibility of a same-sex royal couple.

But Prime Minister Mark Rutte said times had changed since one of his predecessors last raised the issue in 2000.

“The government believes that the heir can also marry a person of the same sex,” Rutte wrote in a letter to Parliament.

“The cabinet therefore does not see that an heir to the throne or the king abdicates if he wishes to marry a partner of the same sex.”

Same-sex marriage was legalized in the Netherlands in 2001.

Rutte said one question remained unanswered: how a same-sex marriage would affect the subsequent succession of the royal couple’s children. And it doesn’t make sense to try to decide that now, he said.

“It just depends on the facts and circumstances of the specific case, as you can see by looking back at how family law may change over time,” he wrote.

Unlike regular weddings, royal weddings require parliamentary approval. Members of the Dutch royal household have sometimes given up their place in the inheritance line to marry someone without permission.