Greece is the first Orthodox Christian country to approve same-sex marriage and adoption of children

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Crowds of people took to the streets of Athens to celebrate the legalization of civil marriage between same-sex people and the adoption of children, making Greece the first Orthodox Christian country in the world to allow this.

A majority of 176 lawmakers in the 300-seat parliament voted late Thursday in favor of the landmark bill drafted by the center-right government of Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis.

Another 76 representatives rejected the reform, while two abstained from voting and 46 members were absent from the Council.

Mitsotakis tweeted after the vote that Greece was “proud to become the 16th country (in the EU) to enact marriage equality legislation”.

Dozens of reform supporters who gathered outside Parliament as they watched the debate on screen cheered loudly and embraced as the vote result was announced.

Earlier, opponents of the bill also protested nearby, carrying prayer books and religious icons.

Opinion polls indicate that most Greeks support reform by a small margin, and this issue has not led to deep divisions in a country whose greatest concern is the high cost of living.

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