Switzerland says resounding ‘yes’ to same-sex marriage

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Swiss backed proposal, which additionally permits {couples} to undertake, by a nearly two-thirds majority in a referendum on Sunday.

Switzerland has agreed to legalise marriage for same-sex {couples} by a nearly two-thirds majority in a referendum, making it one of many final nations in Western Europe to take action.

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According to outcomes supplied by the Swiss federal chancellery, 64.1 % of voters voted in favour of same-sex marriage in Sunday’s nationwide referendum.

“It is a historic day for Switzerland, a historic day when it comes to equality for same-sex couples, and it is also an important day for the whole LGBT community,” mentioned Jan Muller of the “yes” marketing campaign committee.

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Switzerland is the world’s 30th nation to undertake same-sex marriages, and one of many final remaining western European nations to take action. The Netherlands was the primary in 2001.

“We are very happy and relieved,” mentioned Antonia Hauswirth of the nationwide committee “Marriage for All”, including supporters would have fun in Switzerland’s capital Bern on Sunday.

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Justice minister Karin Keller-Sutter mentioned the primary same-sex marriages ought to be capable to happen from July 1 subsequent yr.

“Whoever loves each other and wants to get married will be able to do so, regardless of whether it is two men, two women, or a man and a woman,” she mentioned.

“The state does not have to tell citizens how they should lead their lives.”

Amnesty International welcomed the move as a “milestone for equality”.

While same-sex {couples} can register a civil partnership, with about 700 established annually, the association doesn’t present the identical rights as marriage, together with for acquiring citizenship and the joint adoption of kids.

The amended regulation will make it doable for same-sex {couples} to get married in civil ceremonies, and undertake youngsters. Married lesbian {couples} can even have entry to sperm donation, in what was one of many extra controversial facets of the referendum marketing campaign.

Proponents gathered the 50,000 signatures wanted to place the difficulty to a referendum below Switzerland’s system of direct democracy after the Swiss parliament permitted a invoice final December permitting same-sex {couples} to marry.

Monika Rueegger of the right-wing Swiss People’s Party (SVP) and member of the referendum committee “No to Marriage for All” mentioned she was disenchanted on the end result.

“This was not about love and feelings, it was about children’s welfare. Children and fathers are the losers here,” she informed the Reuters information company.

The regulation can even make it simpler for foreigners married to Swiss folks to get citizenship.

A majority in all 26 cantons of the nation of greater than eight million folks voted sure – even essentially the most conservative ones. Support was strongest in Basel City at 74 %.

“The Swiss have dropped a massive ‘yes’ into the ballot box,” Olga Baranova, a spokeswoman for the “yes” committee, informed the AFP information company.

She was at a restaurant within the Swiss capital Bern internet hosting the “yes” marketing campaign’s celebrations – decked out in balloons within the rainbow colors.

“Today does not change my country,” Baranova mentioned.

“Today reflects the change of mentality over the last 20 years. It is really the reflection of a very broad and very important acceptance of LGBT people in society.”

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