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Australian Capital Territory votes to legalize same-sex marriage

Monday, October 21, 2013

CANBERRA, Australia — A provincial parliament in Australia has become the country’s first to pass a law that allows same-sex marriages. But the federal government has threatened a court challenge.

Australian-Capital-TerritoryThe Australian Capital Territory parliament passed the law with the support of lawmakers from the province’s governing Labor and Greens parties.

All eight opposition Liberal Party lawmakers in the 17-seat Legislative Assembly voted against the bill.

The first same-sex marriage could take place in December, but federal Attorney General George Brandis, a member of the Liberal Party, said his government has legal advice that the legislation is invalid.

Australian Capital Territory Chief Minister Katy Gallagher has refused a request from Brandis not to allow same-sex marriages to take place until the High Court ruled on the law’s constitutional validity.

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