Argentina legalises gay marriage

The law, backed by the centre-left government of President Cristina Kirchner, was adopted in a 33-27 vote after 15 hours of debate. In this majority Roman Catholic country, some had reservations, but the law passed.|

“It is a historic day,” said ruling party leader Miguel Pichetto. Opposition Radical senator Gerardo Morales said Argentine society has changed, stressing that the bill was aimed at guaranteeing the rights of minorities.The law tweaks the legal code which no longer will refer to husband and wife, but rather to “the marrying parties”.

Same-sex couples will have the same rights as heterosexuals in terms of adoptions, social security and family time.

Argentina became the first country in Latin America to give a green light to same-sex marriage nationwide. It followed, around the world, the Netherlands, Belgium, Spain, Canada, South Africa, Norway, Sweden, Portugal and Iceland.

But same-sex couples from other countries shouldn't rush their Argentine wedding plans, since only citizens and residents can wed in the country, and the necessary documents can take months to obtain. While it makes some amendments to the civil code, many other aspects of family law will have to be changed.

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