Gay and Lesbian couples in Denmark will legally be able to marry as from today as the countries new same-sex marriage laws come into effect. Denmark joins fellow Scandinavian Norway, Iceland and Sweden which have already passed laws allowing same-sex couples to marry. Denmark indicated it would legalise gay marriage earlier this year.
The Danish government, the Folketing, approved same sex marriage last week with 85 votes in favour with 24 opposing. Under Denmark’s new marriage laws gay and lesbian couples will be able to marry in state churches of their choice but importantly priests will not be forced to conduct such ceremonies if they do not wish to. If a Priest declines to marry a gay/lesbian couple they will have to assist the couple find a Priest who will marry them.
France has recently indicated it will allow gay and lesbian couples to marry with some sources claiming laws to that affect will be passed by next year. Other European countries debating legalising gay marriage include Finland, Germany, Luxemburg and the United Kingdom.
Besides the Scandinavian countries listed above gay marriage has also been legalised in other European countries such as Spain, Portugal, Belgium and The Netherlands.