The marriage could not be held in the town hall in southern Cabestany, due to it being ‘illegal’ in the world of France. France had one other gay marriage officiated and celebrated in 2004, but it was later annulled by a court.
French Communist Mayor Jean Vila believes that to outlaw homosexual marriage is to deny the reality of thousands of homosexual couples. The act of performing the marriage was one of anger and revolt in the face of authorities that are choosing to outlaw marriage among the gay community. The marriage wasn’t added into the marriage registry to avoid annulment. Vila is hoping that this act might push the country to amend its laws.
The couple’s symbolic marriage ‘license’ read as follows; “Unfortunately this document has no official character, since the law today forbids marriage between people of the same sex, but if signifies the wish of the local authority to see the law change.”
The mayor’s defiance was quickly dismissed by President Nicolas Sarkozy’s Minister for Families, Claude Gredd, who called the nuptials as a pre-election “provocation” ahead of the 2012 presidential election poll.
Only a handful of countries in Europe allow couple of the same sex to wed, but France is among one that only allows civil unions, a status, which confers fewer rights than marriage proper.