The ruling was passed on Tuesday morning (5th December) at Austria'sConstitutional Court with same-sex couples being allowed to marry starting in 2019.
Austria'sconstitutional court examined a 2009 law that allows registered partnerships for same-sex couples but prevents them from getting married.
The ruling brings Austria up to speed with other European nations including Germany, Spain, France and the United Kingdom, all of which have legalized same-sex marriage in the past several years.
The OVP and the FPO voted against same-sex marriage in parliament a few months ago. "The legal separation of gender and same-sex relationships into two different legal institutions thus violates the principle of equality of principle of discriminating against people based on personal characteristics such as sexual orientation".
As it now stands, same-sex couples in Austria had been allowed to enter civil partnerships for the last seven years. The conservative People's Partystated [Reuters report] it will accept the ruling while the far-right Freedom Party criticized the ruling.
Helmut Graupner, a lawyer for the two women who brought the case, wrote in a Facebook post that "today is a truly historic day".
"We are very happy", said The Homosexual Initiative Vienna (HOSI) chairman Christian Hoegl.
In 2011, the Netherlands became the first country in the world to allow gay marriage, and more than a dozen European countries have since followed suit. "We want to use the opportunity for a renewed call for a fundamental reform of marriage". The country's courts have now ruled that definition cannot remain and have ordered that marriage be made available to all couples.
In 2010, Austria adopted a law on registered partnership, applicable only to same-sex couples.
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