Australia has voted in favour of legalising same-sex marriage.
With a turnout of 79.5%, the country’s Bureau of Statistics said the vote in the non-binding postal survey was in favour by 61.6% to 38.4%.
79.5% of eligible Australians responded to the survey. 61.6% supported changing the law to allow same-sex couples to marry and 38.4% did not. pic.twitter.com/o3n2sx710R— ARCHIVED - AU Bureau of Stats (@ABSStatsarchive) November 14, 2017
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, London Mayor Sadiq Khan and Taoiseach Leo Varadkar were among the first politicians to react to the news on social media.
Welcome news from Australia this morning! Everyone should be free to love whoever they want to love. #loveislove #marriageequality 🌈 pic.twitter.com/iiM3h0qrOS— Mayor of London (@MayorofLondon) November 15, 2017
Also joining in to show their support were Apple CEO Tim Cook and Virgin boss Richard Branson.
Along with the Sydney Opera House, the internet lit up with shades of rainbow.
🏳️🌈🏳️🌈🇦🇺=👉👨❤️💋👨=👩❤️💋👩👈=🇦🇺🏳️🌈🏳️🌈— Taika Waititi (@TaikaWaititi) November 15, 2017
For some, the result has a personal connection.
Was shaking when I finally summoned the courage to come out to dad years ago. He was supportive, but quiet. Later, we had a huge fight about gay marriage and didn’t talk for months.
He just sent me this. pic.twitter.com/Ap4akaZ6Ah— David Mack (@davidmackau) November 14, 2017
Following the results, Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, a vocal advocate of marriage equality, called on lawmakers to heed the “overwhelming” result and to commit to legislate for gay marriage by next month.
The Australian parliament will vote by December on legislation to lift the prohibition.