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It's Official: France Legalizes Same-Sex Marriage

President Hollande signs bill into law after failed legal challenge

by
Common Dreams staff

People gather demonstration in support of same-sex marriage bill in Marseille, April 23, 2013. (Reuters/Jean-Paul Pelissier)

French President Francois Hollande signed the country's same-sex marriage and adoption bill into law on Saturday, almost one month after its passage in Parliament that prompted a legal challenge in the country's Constitutional Council by the conservative opposition.

The Constitutional Council threw out the challenge on Friday, opening the gate for Hollande's signature.

Friday also marked the International Day Against Homophobia.

France is now the 14th country to legalize same-sex marriage.

Agence France-Presse reports:

Hollande acted a day after the Constitutional Council threw out a legal challenge by the right-wing opposition, which had been the last obstacle to passing the bill into law. The legislation also legalizes gay adoption.

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But while gay rights groups hailed the move, opponents of the measures have vowed to fight on.

Hollande made "marriage for all" a central plank of his presidential election campaign last year.

On Friday, he tried to turn the page on months of bitter opposition to the measures, arguing it was "time to respect the law and the Republic".

And he warned that he would tolerate no resistance.

"I will ensure that the law applies across the whole territory, in full, and I will not accept any disruption of these marriages," said the president.

The Socialist mayor of the southern French city of Montpellier will officiate the municipality's first gay marriage on May 29, her office said on Saturday, in what is also expected to be the country's first.

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