The first case of its kind in Belgium where a same sex wedded male couple have battled with courts and legislators to bring to their home a surrogate baby born to a Ukrainian woman has ended happily.
Following statements by the Vice Prime Minister and Minister for Foreign Affairs Steven Vanackere of Belgium two weeks ago during the couple’s court case that “this should not create a precedent, and nor should we enter into an era of exploitation of the Eastern European coutnries for surrogate babies,”the Ministry of Foreign Affairs has in the end handed the now two year old toddler a Belgian Passport.
The couple Peter Meurrens and Laurent Ghilain have now also welcomed their son Samuel Gilhain to Belgium at Zaventem Airport on February 28, 2010 and are overwhelmed by the final decisions of both the High Court of Belgium and the Foreign Ministry.
Peter Meurrens commented on his Facebook status, “So many people to thank. Where to start? As for this weekend : Celine Verbrouck de Blanmailland (our pretty, intelligent and kind lawyer, the best !), Kurt Wertelaers (support, discrecy, pictures) and Connections (or how to synchronise fathers travelling to meet their son “halfway”). Second shift for tomorrow :-).”
Their story was precedent making for Belgium as Samuel was born to a surrogate mother in Ukraine in November 2008 and bureaucratic hurdles kept him from lavign the country since, reported the New Zealand Herald on February 28.
Following the Belgian court’s decision the Foreign Ministry issued the passport necessary for the child to travel.