Sweden redefines marriage
Sweden has become the fifth European country to allow gay couples to be legally married. The country’s parliament voted overwhelmingly to recognise same-sex marriage from the beginning of this month.
Sweden was one of the first countries to give gay couples legal partnership rights, in the mid-1990s; and allowed them to adopt children from 2002. The new law lets homosexuals wed in either a civil or religious ceremony, though individual churches can opt out. The law was passed by 226 votes to 22 and will come into force on 1 May.
The Netherlands passed similar legislation in 2000, Belgium in 2003, Spain in 2005 and Norway in 2008.