The French Senate voted to legalize same-sex marriage on Friday, passing the legislation through the upper house of Parliament, led by President Francois Hollande’s Socialists. The vote also includes the granting of rights regarding adoption by same-sex parents.
The bill is on track to become law within weeks following a second reading in the National Assembly, expected as early as Wednesday.
The National Assembly passed the bill in its entirety back in February before passing it to the Senate for review. They will now give the legislation a second reading to consider minor Senate changes from the original draft.
Senators had approved crucial articles of the bill earlier this week.
On Tuesday, they passed the first article, which removes the requirement for different genders as a condition of the right to marry.
The second most important part of the bill concerning the rights of same-sex parents to adopt was passed through the Senate on Wednesday.
“We are overwhelmed with pride by this vote to move our society forward,” said the head of the Socialists in the Senate, Francois Rebsamen.
Opponents of the legislation are not deterred, and say they will organize another mass protest in Paris on May 26 if the law is approved, demanding its withdrawal and a referendum.
“The parliamentary process continues so we will keep talking with the French people who seem to change their position,” said UMP party senator Jean-Pierre Raffarin. “So nothing is definitive and the debate continues.”