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Ecuador legalises gay marriage

Ecuador’s apex court has authorised same-sex marriage in a landmark case seeking to expand LGBT rights in the small South American nation.

The Constitutional Court said gay  marriage had been approved in a five-to-four vote of its nine judges in a closed hearing.

Ecuador has recognised de-facto civil unions for same-sex couples since 2015.

The Constitutional Court approved same-sex marriage as it ruled on lawsuits by two pairs of men who wanted to wed.

The men in one of those couples are named Efrain Soria and Javier Benalcazar.

Ecuador’s current constitution, ratified in 2008, defines marriage as the union between a man and a woman. It also bars same-sex couples from adopting children.

The majority of judges that voted in favour of gay unions said they based their decision on the idea that all people are equal.

Ecuador, where the church is very influential, thus joins  Argentina, Brazil and Colombia in recognising same-sex marriage.

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