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New Zealand Legalizes Same-Sex Marriage

New Zealand's parliament has approved a measure legalizing same-sex marriage.

The vote Wednesday makes the country the first in the Asia-Pacific region and the 13th worldwide to allow gay marriage.

The measure passed by a vote of 77 to 44 and will take effect in August.

After the result was announced, people in the chamber celebrated by singing a song in the indigenous Maori language.

New Zealand had allowed same-sex civil unions since 1995.

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