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New law takes effect, same-sex couples married overnight

By Sheetal Sukhija, Asia Pacific News
10 Jan 2018, 11:36 GMT+10

CANBERRA, Australia - At the stroke of midnight on Monday, after Australia’s last legal impediment to gay marriage expired, several same-sex couples tied the knot across the country.

As the new law, making such unions legal took effect, Australia officially became the 26th country to recognize same-sex marriage.

In November, almost 62 percent of the country's voters favoured legalizing same-sex marriage, in a nationwide postal survey, leading the way for the government to pass the new law. 

Then, on December 9, marriage equality became law after it received overwhelming support in Parliament.

However, since Australia requires all couples to give a month's notice for weddings, made Tuesday the first possible date for gay marriages.

Local reports noted that Athletes Craig Burns and Luke Sullivan married at a midnight ceremony near Tweed Heads city.

The 29-year-old sprinter Burns, who is set to compete in the Commonwealth Games in Australia's Gold Coast in April told reporters, "It's another way to show your love and appreciation of your partner in front of the people in your life.”

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