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Kerry: US Supreme Court Gay Marriage Decision Sends Clear Message to World

© REUTERS / Dominick ReuterThe color guard for LGBT veterans group OutVets marches down Broadway during the St. Patrick's Day Parade in South Boston, Massachusetts
The color guard for LGBT veterans group OutVets marches down Broadway during the St. Patrick's Day Parade in South Boston, Massachusetts - Sputnik International
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The Supreme Court decision to legalize same-sex marriage strengthens the cause of equal rights for gays around the world, US Secretary of State John Kerry said.

WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — Friday’s Supreme Court decision to legalize gay marriage makes the United States the twentieth country to have done so.

“The Court’s decision also sends a clear message to every corner of the globe: no law that rests on a foundation of discrimination can withstand the tide of justice.”

White House - Sputnik International
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Many Nordic and Western European countries allow gay marriage, as do Brazil, Argentina and South Africa, according to a tally by the Pew Research Center.

A Special Envoy for the Human Rights of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Intersex (LGBTI) Persons at the State Department is tasked with promoting equal rights for gays around the world.

US Supreme Court ruled 5-4 Friday in favour of gay marriage on constitutional grounds.

Gay rights supporters celebrate after the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that the U.S. Constitution provides same-sex couples the right to marry, outside the Supreme Court building in Washington, June 26, 2015 - Sputnik International
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The case, commonly known as Obergefell v Hodges, challenged the definition of marriage in four US states as "a union between one man and one woman," under the 14th amendment to the US Constitution, specifically the provision guaranteeing equal protection under the law.

The US president, long an advocate of gay rights, said the United States should be proud of the Supreme Court's decision to grant equal rights to gay couples, which was the outcome of "countless small acts of courage."

Before Friday's Supreme Court decision, 37 US states and the District of Columbia allowed gay marriage.

© REUTERS / Javier GaleanoSame-sex marriage in Florida
Same-sex marriage in Florida - Sputnik International
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