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First Same-Sex Couples Wed in England, Wales

Following same-sex marriage law, couples marry at the stroke of midnight

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Jacob Chamberlain, staff writer

At the stroke of midnight same-sex couples across England and Wales tied the knot for the first time in history as a recently passed law came into force Saturday.

"When we were born, it was illegal to be gay, let alone get married," said Andrew Wale, 49, who was one the many to marry during Saturday's early hour. "I didn't think about the possibility for most of my life. It is only really recently that suddenly the option seemed to be on its way."

England and Wales are now among 15 countries in addition to parts of the United States and Mexico that allow same-sex marriage, as CNN reports.

A law legalizing same-sex marriage was passed in Parliament in July, as leaders of all three main parties backed the bill.

“It’s definitely a landmark moment,” said Richard Lane, spokesman for the gay rights advocacy group Stonewall. Same-sex relationships will now be recognized as “just as loving, united and, frankly, mundane as everyone else’s relationships,” he said.

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