A Swiss legislative panel has voted overwhelmingly in favor of gay marriage.
The legal affairs committee last week recommended that the National Council adopt a parliamentary initiative called Marriage for All.
The vote was 12 in favor, two opposed, with one abstention.
The initiative, which was submitted by the Green Liberal Party, calls on the legislature to open up marriage to gay couples, and registered partnerships to straight couples.
Registered partnerships for gay couples have been recognized since January 2007.
LGBTI groups welcomed the recommendation and said they were pleased that gay marriage was finally a topic of political debate.
‘The Swiss LGBT umbrella associations support marriage equality and applaud the members of the Legal Affairs Committee of the National Council for their support and foresight and for assuming their responsibility to grant all Swiss the rights guaranteed to them by the Constitution,’ they said in a joint statement.
‘We are not asking for special rights; we are simply asking for equality. And we are asking for marriage equality because our relationships are as strong and our families are as worthy as those of everyone else in Switzerland.’