Britain introduces same-sex marriage bill

2013-01-25 20:07
Retired US Coast Guard Petty Officer 1st Class Nancy Monahan, right, wears her dress uniform as she leans to kiss her soon-to-be bride Deb Needham while they wait at Seattle City Hall to become among the first gay couples to legally wed in the state.

Retired US Coast Guard Petty Officer 1st Class Nancy Monahan, right, wears her dress uniform as she leans to kiss her soon-to-be bride Deb Needham while they wait at Seattle City Hall to become among the first gay couples to legally wed in the state.

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London - The British government has introduced a bill legalising same-sex marriage, and says lawmakers will get their first vote on it in Parliament next month.

The Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill, published on Friday, extends marriage to gay couples but excludes clergy in the Church of England - the country's official faith - from having to carry out the ceremonies.

That is intended to placate religious opponents of same-sex unions -though it has not stopped criticism of the bill from religious leaders.

The bill is likely to become law because it is supported by Conservative Prime Minister David Cameron, many of his Cabinet and most Liberal Democrat and Labour lawmakers.

But some traditionalist Conservative lawmakers say they will vote against it. The first debate and vote are scheduled for 5 February.

- SAPA

Read more on:    david cameron  |  uk  |  gay rights
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