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France Celebrates First Gay Marriage Amid Tight Security

In her wedding speech, Montpellier's mayor said the marriage marked a "historic day" in the fight against discrimination in France and for "a society without judgement or rejection." She called for an end to "so much hate, violence, division". The couple appeared on the city hall balcony to cheers from a crowd of 200 to 300 people gathered in the street below. The mayor's office had considered staging a live transmission of the wedding on a giant screen outside, but ruled against it for security reasons. Frigide Barjot, the comedian who leads the anti-gay marriage movement, had urged militants to stay away from the wedding. "You don't protest against people who love each other - otherwise this movement becomes homophobic," she said. Rights groups hoped the pictures of the smiling newly-weds splashed across all media would draw a line under the mass protests against same-sex marriage in France, the 9th European country to legalise it.
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