Norway: First Muslim-Christian gay marriage
For the first time in the Nordic countries, a Christian-Muslim gay couple got married.
Knut Egil Asprusten (44) and Kaltham Alexander Lie (49) got married in Oslo two weeks ago. They've been together since last October.
Kaltham Lie, who had been tortured in Iraq for being gay, was visibly moved and tears in his eyes after the ceremony. As an immigrants, Muslim, gay and now married to a Christian, he knows very well what it's like being to be stigmatized.
Lie and Asprusten both believe deeply in their faiths, but their religion doesn't come between them. "It was too difficult for Kaltham to go to the mosque, but he was with me in church. Even if we have different religions, we both believe in an open God. It doesn't cause us any problems," says Asprusten.
Kaltham Lie same to Norway in 1992, after he had to flee due to his gay tendencies. He has Muslim friends, but keeps away from the Muslim community in the city. "It's very important for me to be open and not to try to hide. Somebody must stand up for the world to advance," he says.
The couple has experienced both discrimination and harassment in the capital. "Oslo can be difficult, but we he also a lot of positive things, even in Grønland," says Asprusten.
The two say they haven't thought much about the fact that they're the first gay Muslim-Christian couple in Norway.
"If we can go ahead and help others it's good, but we would have married regardless," says Asprusten.