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Gay marriage approved by German MPs in snap vote

Mrs Merkel's political opponents were strongly in favour. But the chancellor, who signalled her backing for a free vote only on Monday, voted against. The bill was backed by 393 lawmakers, 226 voted against and four abstained. The German legal code will now read: "Marriage is entered into for life by two people of different or the same sex", AFP news agency reported. Following Friday's vote, Mrs Merkel said that for her marriage was between a man and a woman. But she said she hoped the passing of the bill would lead to more "social cohesion and peace".

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