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Taiwan Legalizes Gay Marriage in Historic First for Asia

Celebrations erupted Friday across Taiwan after its parliament legalized same-sex marriage, making it the first nation in Asia to enact gay-marriage legislation. The state’s constitutional court ruled in 2017 that gay couples had a legal right to marry, but legislation had stalled over language and whether to recognize gay couples as same-sex family relationships, same-sex unions, or same-sex marriage. Parliament voted on the use of the word “marriage” 66 to 27. The measure will take effect when President Tsai Ing-wen signs it into law. “What a tremendous victory for LGBT rights,” Phil Robertson, deputy Asia director at Human Rights Watch, told the BBC. “Taiwan’s action today should sound a clarion call, kicking off a larger movement across Asia to ensure equality for LGBT people.”