Cyprus first public gay wedding

first_img Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagram For Marios Frixou, 36, and Fanos Eleftheriades, 26, last week saw a dream of theirs came true, when they said ‘I do’ in what was Cyprus’ first public gay wedding.The only unconventional aspect of the wedding was the two grooms at the front of the altar; from there on it was as traditional as they come. Mr Frixou’s mother greeted the couple by handing both a gold coin – old family heirlooms – that they each hung around their necks. The couple then danced to the traditional wedding song, with guests feasting on roasted pork and lining up with offerings of cash-filled envelopes.Overjoyed to be finally be wed after seven years together, the couple said they opted for the traditional trimmings to encourage others on the island to be open and proud of their own love.“We wanted to give courage to other couples and to all gay and transgender people to accept themselves and not to be ashamed of who they are,” said Mr Frixou. “We’ve gotten scores of messages from people telling us how much courage we’ve given them.”The simple yet meaningful ceremony, which took place before the Nicosia District Officer, was made possible late last year, when lawmakers passed a civil union law recognising gay marriage. The move was a big step forward for gay rights across the globe, and for Cyprus itself, which decriminalised homosexuality just 18 years ago.The newlyweds exchanged vows in the presence of their two best women, along with a few friends and family, before heading to the reception where hundreds turned out to wish the couple well. Though the civil union law grants gay couples the same legal rights as heterosexual couples, there continues to be a restriction against joint adoption of children.While the church and local religious groups continue to hold their stance in opposition of gay marriage, they haven’t been as vocal of late says Costas Gavrielides, president of gay rights group ACCEPT.“People are coming to terms with the fact that the rights of all people must be respected and actually enshrined in law,” said Mr Gavrielides.“Same-sex couples have been given the opportunity to feel legitimised.”last_img

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