Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

The World This Week - April 18th, 2014

Read more

WEB NEWS

France's top consumer group sues Internet giants

Read more

WEB NEWS

Web users pay tribute to South Korea ferry victims

Read more

AFRICA NEWS

A landslide victory for the 'invisible candidate' in Algeria's Presidential polls

Read more

THE WORLD THIS WEEK

The World This Week - 18 April 2014 (part 2)

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Presidential adviser resigns over "shoe-shine scandal"

Read more

#THE 51%

Breaking stereotypes

Read more

#TECH 24

Galaxy S5 v. HTC One (M8): Which is the right one for you?

Read more

FRANCE IN FOCUS

New PM Manuel Valls outlines priorities

Read more

  • Deadly shootout in eastern Ukraine threatens Geneva deal

    Read more

  • S.Korea president says captain’s action akin to ‘murder’

    Read more

  • Why Syria’s cash-strapped jihadists let hostages go

    Read more

  • Video: Ukraine crisis overshadows Easter celebrations

    Read more

  • The Great War's unsung four-legged heroes

    Read more

  • UK’s Hamilton cruises to victory at Chinese Grand Prix

    Read more

  • In pictures: French kite festival takes flight

    Read more

  • Freed French journalists arrive home after Syria ordeal

    Read more

  • Syria’s Assad visits recaptured Christian town at Easter

    Read more

  • Le Pen’s National Front fail to woo Britain’s Eurosceptics

    Read more

  • PSG clinch fourth League Cup title after beating Lyon

    Read more

  • Militants kill Algerian soldiers in deadly ambush

    Read more

  • Scores killed in South Sudan cattle raid

    Read more

  • VIDEO: Anti-Semitic leaflets in Eastern Ukraine condemned

    Read more

  • Does Valls’ upcoming Vatican trip violate French secularism?

    Read more

  • Obama signs bill to block controversial Iran diplomat from UN post

    Read more

  • Astronomers discover Earth-like planet that could support life

    Read more

Europe

Queen signs final approval of UK same-sex marriage bill

© Photo: AFP

Text by FRANCE 24

Latest update : 2013-07-17

Queen Elizabeth II gave her royal approval to Britain’s same-sex marriage bill on Wednesday, granting gay couples the right to marry in England and Wales starting in 2014. The bill has caused controversy among Conservative lawmakers.

Queen Elizabeth II gave her royal stamp of approval on Wednesday to a bill, passed the previous day by British lawmakers, legalising same-sex marriage in England and Wales and paving the way for the first gay weddings in 2014.

MPs decided not to oppose a number of minor amendments to the Marriage (Same-Sex Couples) Bill proposed by the upper House of Lords.

Britain has seen none of the mass protests over gay marriage held across the channel in France, which last weekend became the 14th country in the world to legalise it.

Some 54% of Britons are in favour of allowing same-sex couples to marry, according to a YouGov poll for the Sunday Times.

Conservative 'loons'

Controversy over the issue among the Conservative Party has heaped pressure on Prime Minister and party leader David Cameron, who is already facing bitter opposition from many Tories over his leadership style and a promised referendum on Britain's EU membership.

The prime minister was forced to send a mass email to Conservative activists after an unnamed ally was reported to have called them "mad, swivel-eyed loons".

"I am proud of what you do. And I would never have around me those who sneered or thought otherwise," he wrote.

The "loons" comment fuelled accusations that Cameron is out of touch with traditional Tories and that the prime minister surrounds himself with people from his own privileged background.

Party co-chairman Lord Andrew Feldman, who strongly denies rumours he was behind the comment, was a schoolmate of Cameron's at the elite Eton College.

Far-right fears

Many Conservative supporters fear that with a general election two years away, Cameron's backing for gay marriage is driving traditional Tory voters to the UK Independence Party (UKIP).

The anti-immigration, anti-EU party is a fast-rising force in British politics and made strong gains in local elections last month.

UKIP leader Nigel Farage said Tuesday he would not expel members for voicing "old-fashioned" views about homosexuality, after reports that one of the party's candidates branded gay sex "disgusting" on an online forum.

A new poll suggested that support for the Conservatives has slumped to 24% – just two % ahead of UKIP – although a different poll put the Tories on 31%.

(FRANCE 24 with wires)

Same-sex unions around the globe


Date created : 2013-07-16

  • FRANCE

    François Hollande signs same-sex marriage into law

    Read more

  • FRANCE

    French constitutional court approves gay-marriage bill

    Read more

  • FRANCE

    French parliament legalises gay marriage, adoption

    Read more

Comments

COMMENT(S)