The Uruguay Senate on Tuesday
overwhelmingly approved a proposed bill which seeks to legalize gay
marriage in the nation.
Senators voted 23-8 in favor of the
The “Marriage Equality Law” seeks
to modify some 20 articles of the Civil Code, including whose surname
goes first when children are named.
The bill now heads back to the lower
house, which approved it last year, for a vote on changes made in the
The proposal has the backing of the
ruling Frente Amplio party.
“This is an issue of liberty, of
people's choice and justice,” Senator Rafael Michelini is quoted as
saying by the AP. “Liberty because the state should not meddle in
who you should marry; of justice because if you marry abroad with
someone of the same sex and later return to Uruguay, your marriage
should be recognized.”
If the marriage law is approved,
Uruguay would become the 12th nation to legalize such
unions. In South America, only Argentina has extended marriage to
gay couples. But inroads are being made in several other countries,
including Mexico and Brazil. Colombia
is currently debating the issue.