Uruguay lawmakers vote to legalise gay marriage

MONTEVIDEO, Uruguay (AP) - Uruguay's lawmakers have voted to legalise gay marriage.

Their vote makes Uruguay the third country in the Americas, after Canada and Argentina, to eliminate laws making marriage, adoption and other family rights exclusive to heterosexuals.

In all, 11 other nations around the world have already taken this step.

The law was backed by 71 of the senators in the 92-seat legislature in Wednesday's vote.

The "marriage equality project" was already approved by ample majorities in both houses, but senators made some changes requiring a final vote by the deputies.

President Jose Mujica's ruling Broad Front majority is expected to put the law into effect within 10 days.

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