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Published On: Fri, Jun 30th, 2017

Germany approves same-sex marriage

Danielle Haynes
United Press International

Two woman hold a placard reading “Love wins in Germany” as they celebrate outside the chancellery the approval of same-sex marriage by the German parliament Friday in Berlin. (Photo by Felipe Trueba/EPA)

BERLIN (UPI) — The German parliament on Friday passed legislation legalizing same-sex marriage after Chancellor Angela Merkel, who voted against the measure, encouraged her party to vote their conscience.

Members of Germany’s Bundestag voted 393-226 to pass the bill, and four people abstained.

Merkel voted no, saying “For me marriage as defined by the law is the marriage of a man and a woman.” But she encouraged her conservative Christian Democratic Party — which has long opposed same-sex marriage — to take up the measure as a “question of conscience.” She said hoped a vote in favor would bring about “more social peace.”

Merkel also said she believes same-sex couples should be able to adopt children.

The chancellor’s recent comments on the topic spurred the last-minute votein parliament before its summer break.

Germany becomes the 14th European country to approve same-sex marriage, the first of which was the Netherlands in 2001. Austria, the Czech Republic and Italy have not OK’d same-sex marriage, but do allow civil partnerships.

About the Author

- United Press International is an international news agency whose newswires, photo, news film, and audio services provided news material to thousands of newspapers, magazines and radio and television stations for most of the 20th century.

Germany approves same-sex marriage