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  HOME | Society (Click here for more)

Luxembourg PM to Marry Belgian Boyfriend on Friday

BRUSSELS – The prime minister of Luxembourg, Xavier Bettel, is getting married on Friday to his Belgian boyfriend, architect Gauthier Destenay.

The betrothal comes a few months after Luxembourg’s Parliament passed an equal rights law bill for gay marriage, as well as allowing adoption.

Luxembourger newspaper L’essentiel highlighted on its website on Friday the “small historic event” that has been echoed throughout European media, since it is the first same-sex marriage of a European Union leader still in office.

Outside the EU, former prime minister of Iceland, Johanna Sigurdardottir, married her female partner in 2010 when she was still in office.

Bettel, who took office in December 2013 in place of Jean-Claude Juncker, will get married in an official civil event on Friday in the city of Luxembourg.

However, the marriage ceremony will be held on Saturday in a popular restaurant located near the Belgian border city of Arlon, Destenay’s hometown, where Belgian Prime Minister Charles Michel among others will be in attendance.

Bettel, who has been consistently open about his sexual orientation, declared when he was a member of the Communal Council of Luxembourg city that he would “only live once,” and would never consider hiding.

Despite being aware of the significance of this event, the Luxembourger leader refused media requests to cover the ceremony.

Bettel and Destenay have been living together since 2010 in a civil union.

Luxembourg, a state with a Roman Catholic majority, recognized in 2004 the right of civil unions for same-sex couples.

Bettel announced last August his intention to marry his partner, and that it was Destenay who proposed to the prime minister to marry him, Bettel told the Los Angeles Times.

 

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