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Chile Apologizes to Lesbian Denied Custody of Kids

Monday Dec 17, 2012
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SANTIAGO, Chile - Chile’s government has apologized to a lesbian judge who was denied custody of her three daughters because she is gay.

The apology was issued Friday during a ceremony led by Justice Minister Teodoro Ribera. Chile says it will pay Magistrate Karen Atala $70,000 and grant her medical and psychological treatment.

The reparation comes 10 months after the Inter-American Court of Human Rights condemned Chile’s decision to deny Atala custody of her children.

Atala had filed a complaint with the Inter-American Commission of Human Rights in Nov. 2004 after Chile’s Supreme Court decided to give custody of her daughters to her ex-husband because she is lesbian. Two of the children are now adults and the third is a teenager.

The ruling followed Chile’s approval this year of an anti-discrimination law.

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