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Last Updated: Thursday, 22 April, 2004, 23:03 GMT 00:03 UK
French mayor to hold gay wedding
Noel Mamere
Mr Mamere had offered to marry gay couples earlier this month
A French politician has said he will conduct his country's first same-sex wedding in June.

Noel Mamere, mayor of Begles near Bordeaux in south-west France and a parliamentary deputy for the Green Party, said he would marry the men.

He said there was nothing in French law to prevent it, and that it was unacceptable that gays did not have the same rights as other French citizens.

Civil unions between same-sex partners have been legal in France since 2000.

However, gay lobby groups say these fall short of legal marriages as they do not come with benefits such as adoption rights or the same fiscal advantages.

Mr Mamere said: "There's nothing extraordinary about marrying two people of the same sex in the European Union.

"Belgium, Sweden and the Netherlands have done it already and the new Spanish prime minister... has put it in his political programme," he told the Reuters news agency.

He said the men asked him last week to perform the ceremony this summer, after he pledged to marry any same-sex couple that asked him.


SEE ALSO:
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Brazilian go-ahead for gay unions
05 Mar 04  |  Americas
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03 Mar 04  |  Americas
Cambodian king backs gay marriage
20 Feb 04  |  Asia-Pacific


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