The Supreme Court of Slovenia lifted the ban on marriage and adoption of children by same-sex couples

Slovenia’s Supreme Court has ruled that banning same-sex couples from marrying and adopting children is unconstitutional in the small European country and has ordered its parliament to amend the law within six months to ensure they can do so.

On Friday, Constitutional Court judges ruled 6-3 on both issues, saying Slovenia’s laws that allow only gay marriage and adoption violate the constitutional ban on discrimination.

Discrimination against same-sex couples “cannot be justified either by the traditional meaning of marriage as a union between a man and a woman, or by the special protection of the family,” according to a ruling issued by the Slovenian Press Agency.

The ruling, which the court says takes effect immediately, violates LGBTQ rights in Central and Eastern Europe, where several countries have constitutional bans on same-sex marriage, none of which have so far allowed same-sex couples to marry.

In 2016, the Estonian government came closest by agreeing to recognize same-sex unions formed in other countries. Croatia, the Czech Republic, Hungary and Montenegro have laws establishing same-sex civil partnerships.

The court decision in Slovenia, which was a socialist republic under communist rule in the former Yugoslavia before it became an independent country in 1991, came just weeks after a liberal national government took power to replace a right-wing conservative-led government .

While the court has given lawmakers six months to amend existing laws in line with the ruling, the necessary changes will be ready in a week or two, Labour, Family, Social Affairs and Equal Opportunity Minister Luca Mesek said.

“The Constitutional Court ordered us to do this, and we will do it with great pleasure,” Mesek said.

The court considered the issue after complaints from two same-sex couples who could not marry or have the right to adopt children.

The courts said the decision “does not detract from traditional marriage as the union of a man and a woman, nor does it change the conditions under which people of the opposite sex enter into marriage. They can now marry in the same way that heterosexual partners can.”