Aus­tralia le­galises same-sex mar­riage

Gulf News - - Palestine -

Aus­tralia’s par­lia­ment has leg­is­lated for mar­riage equal­ity, pass­ing a bill al­most unan­i­mously to al­low two peo­ple, re­gard­less of sex, to marry.

Yes­ter­day the House of Rep­re­sen­ta­tives passed a cross-party bill after an un­prece­dented na­tional postal sur­vey gave un­stop­pable mo­men­tum to leg­is­late the his­toric so­cial re­form.

Aus­tralia, which changed the law in 2004 to say that mar­riage is only be­tween a man and a woman, now joins 24 coun­tries which recog­nise same-sex mar­riage.

The lower house passed mar­riage equal­ity with al­most all mem­bers of the gov­ern­ing Lib­eral-Na­tional Coali­tion join­ing La­bor, the Greens, and cross-bench MPs in a free vote to pass the bill which cleared the Sen­ate last week sans amend­ment.

The only no votes were Coali­tion MPs Rus­sell Broad­bent, Keith Pitt, David Lit­tleproud and in­de­pen­dent MP Bob Kat­ter.

Tony Smith de­clared the vote car­ried, since fewer than five MPs op­posed it.

Cou­ples hop­ing to marry will have to wait un­til the new year for the com­mence­ment of the bill and the 28day no­tice pe­riod to marry.

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