CANBERRA, August 5, 2003 ( – Australia’s Prime Minister, John Howard, has clearly and publicly rejected homosexual marriage because it is “incompatible” with an institution that ensures “the survival of the species.”“I would never support any facilitation of it in Australia,” he said, becoming one of few world leaders to articulate a clear and principled position. “The reason is not based on discrimination. It is that marriage as we have traditionally understood it [is] the voluntary union between a man and a woman, hopefully for life,” said Howard, who heads a popular centre-right Liberal-National coalition government.  Howard called marriage “a bedrock institution. … You’re talking here about the survival of the species. The idea that you treat a gay union the same way as you treat a union between a man and a woman is, in my view, to misunderstand the fundamental bedrock character of marriage.”  He said marriage “provid[es] the most secure environment” for raising the next generation, and added that marital breakdown is something to be resisted. “I’d like to do anything I can to encourage people to marry and to preserve the institution,” he said.  For local coverage:,4057,6867323%255E421,00.html