German tabloid Bild is reporting that Guido Westerwelle, the country's openly gay foreign minister, has “married” his 43-year-old partner, event manager Michael Mronz.

With the headline Secret Wedding, the paper reported that the couple entered a civil partnership in Westerwelle's home town of Bonn on Friday. The ceremony was presided over by Bonn Mayor Juergen Nimptsch and only close friends and family attended, the newspaper said.

Civil partnerships offer gay and lesbian couples some but not all the rights of marriage.

According to media accounts, the two men met in 2003 and were first seen together attending Chancellor Angela Merkel's 50th birthday party in 2004. The couple has been crowned a “power couple” by Germany's media.

Westerwelle, the 48-year-old leader of the pro-business Free Democrats, was appointed foreign minister last year.

A spokesman for the Free Democrats reportedly has confirmed the report, but would not comment any further.

Other high-profile, openly gay politicians in Germany include Berlin Mayor Klaus Wowereit and former Hamburg Mayor Ole von Beust.

Westerwelle presided over last month's opening ceremony for the 2010 Gay Games in Cologne's RheinEnergie Stadium.