The German parliament voted Friday to legalize same-sex marriage, joining many other western European nations and the United States in implementing equal rights.
Lawmakers voted 393 for same-sex marriage and 226 against it. There were four abstentions.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel however voted against the bill, saying, “For me, marriage in German law is marriage between a man and a woman and that is why I did not vote in favour of this bill today,” to reporters after the bill had been passed.
“I hope that the vote today not only promotes respect between different opinions but also brings more social cohesion and peace,” she said.