New Zealand has said ‘Yes’ to legalising gay marriage, making it the first country in the Asia-Pacific region to do so.
The parliament voted 77-44 in favour despite lobbying from Christian groups. The laws will come into effect in August making it the 13th country worldwide to approve gay marriage.
In France, the issue is proving divisive. The country’s top Catholic bishop warned that legalising same-sex marriage would incite violence. Opponents to changes in the law have staged protests in Paris, where 70 were arrested on Monday.
However, with a majority in favour the government has sped up the process, and is expected to pass the laws next week which would make it the 14th country to allow gay couples to wed.