Ireland’s same-sex marriage vote has been signed into law and weddings will commence by mid-November.
“The Presidential Commission today signed the ‘Marriage Bill 2015’ into law,” the president’s office said in a statement, paving the way for the first weddings within a month. Ireland voted 62.1 percent in favour of allowing marriage between two people “without distinction as to their sex” in May, the first time anywhere that gay marriage has been legalised in a referendum. The president’s endorsement was the final hurdle for the bill after legal challenges briefly delayed the legislation from coming into effect. The first ceremonies should be possible by mid-November, according to Justice Minister Frances Fitzgerald. Senator Katherine Zappone, who had long campaigned for her Canadian marriage to her wife to be recognised in Ireland, called it “a defining moment”. “It is a deeply emotional moment for those of us who have campaigned for so long,” Zappone said in a statement. “This victory truly belongs to the nation, it is a moment for us all.”