Greece becomes first Orthodox Christian country to legalise same-sex marriage

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Greece has become the first majority Orthodox Christian country to legalise same-sex marriage.

The same-sex marriage bill – which was drafted by Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis′ centre-right government – was approved 176-76 in the 300-member assembly late Thursday, with 2 MPs voting “present.” A total of 46 abstained.

The new law allows same-sex couples to have a civil marriage and recognises parental rights for same-sex couples. It will not allow gay men to acquire biological children through surrogate mothers in Greece.

The announcement of the result was greeted by sustained applause.

Supporters, waving rainbow banners, and opponents of the bill, holding religious icons and praying, held separate gatherings outside parliament on Thursday.

The landmark bill was backed by four left-wing parties, including the main opposition party SYRIZA. Three small far-right parties and the Communist Party rejected the draft law.

Church officials had centered their criticism on the bill’s implications for traditional family values.

Source: AP News and Ekathimerini.

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