Cuba to hold mass wedding to push for legal recognition of same-sex marriage

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LGBT rights activists in Cuba are planning a mass wedding this weekend, with a view to pushing for legal recognition of same-sex marriage.

Leading the activists will be Mariela Castro, the daughter of President Raul Castro, who happens to be a leading LGBT rights campaigner.

Although only symbolic, and not legally recognised, the mass wedding will take place as part of the South American country’s annual gay pride parade.

Speaking ahead of the event, Ms Castro said she hoped the statement would lead to a legislative change in future.

“We can’t do a wedding, but we wanted to have a very modest celebration of love with some religious leaders,” said Ms Castro,

“In the future we’ll see what more we can do.”

The Gay Men’s Chorus of Washington will tour Cuba later this summer – amid softening relations between the country and the US, after half a century of no diplomacy.

In 2013 hundreds of Cubans, led by Ms Castro, marched in Havana.

An international LGBT conference was also held in Cuba last May.

Slow moves towards equal marriage are taking place in South America, as Uruguay last year became the 12th country in the world to legalise same-sex marriage.

Uruguay’s neighbour Argentina legalised equal marriage in 2010.

Around half of Brazil’s states also now allow gay marriage.