Getty Images | EZEQUIEL BECERRA / Contributor

Costa Rica Becomes First Central American Country Where Same-Sex Marriage Is Legal

Costa Rica has officially made it legal for same-sex couples to tie the knot. Lawmakers finalized the move this week, officially making Costa Rica the first Latin American nation to recognize same-sex marriage.

For gay and lesbian couples in Latin America, the news has been a long time coming.

The wheels were set in motion in 2018.

In January of 2018, Costa Rica asked the Inter-American Court of Human Rights whether it was obligated to extend property rights to same-sex couples. The court ruled that same-sex marriages should be recognized and rights extended.

Costa Rica had a big decision to make.

Later in 2018, Costa Rica's Constitutional Court ruled that laws prohibiting same-sex marriage were unconstitutional. From there, the country's legislature had 18 months to either legalize same-sex marriage, or have the ruling automatically go into effect.

Either way, same-sex marriage was coming to Costa Rica. The only question was when.

The president issued this tweet.

Twitter | @CarlosAlvQ

Carlos Alvarado Quesada, who's been serving as president since 2016, announced the happy news with this tweet. It's especially big news because Costa Rica is the first country in Latin America to recognize marriage equality.

Love wins.

Twitter | @musicboyskinny

LGBTQ+ advocacy groups celebrated the historic move, which was trending on Twitter shortly after it was announced. While the events of 2018 ensured that same-sex marriage would be legalized, it had been a long two years of waiting.

This couple was the first to tie the knot.

Getty Images | EZEQUIEL BECERRA / Contributor

Daritza Araya Arguedas and Alexandra Quirós Castillo, a couple from Costa Rica's capital of San Jose, rushed to get married as soon as they were legally allowed to. They tied the knot early Tuesday morning just outside the capital of San Jose.

The wedding was live-streamed.

Officiant Ana Cecilia Castro Calzada said, "You have begun in law what has existed in love. We celebrate and honor this journey that you have made together as life companions in hope of a day like today: historic for you two and for Costa Rica.”

It remains to be seen if other countries will follow suit.

Unsplash | Bill Oxford

Marriage equality has a long way to go in Latin America. Costa Rica took the initiative to ask for a ruling on same-sex marriage. Other countries will need to take similar steps in order for progress to be made.

It's a watershed moment, either way.

Twitter | @SferaLegal

While Costa Rica's big day shines a light on the sorry state of gay and lesbian rights throughout Latin America, it's a sure sign of progress as well.

What do you think?

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