The Straits Times
Published on Dec 19, 2012

Gay Australian politician and partner to wed in Spain


MADRID (AFP) - An Australian politician and his boyfriend are getting married in Spain on Wednesday after flying halfway round the world to take advantage of the country's gay marriage laws, they told AFP.

Ian Hunter, social inclusion minister in the state government of South Australia, and his partner of 22 years Leith Semmens, have come from Adelaide to tie the knot in Jun, a small Spanish town near Granada.

Australian lawmakers have rejected efforts over recent months to legalise same-sex marriages. Spain has allowed such marriages since 2005, though cases of two foreigners coming to Spain to marry remain rare.

"We're not getting married because of any political campaign. We're getting married to express our love for each other, as our friends can do back home," Mr Hunter, 52, told AFP by telephone as he and Mr Semmens, 42, prepared for the ceremony.