France’s main opposition party has pledged to introduce marriage equality and allow gays and lesbians to adopt if it wins power in the country’s presidential elections in 2012.

On April 4, leaders of the Socialist Party submitted the first draft of the party’s policy program for the election.

To  “open the right to marriage and adoption for all couples” was the 27th of 30 main priorities in the policy document.

France has recognised same-sex couples with civil partnerships with most of the rights of marriage since 1999, but the country has been slow to move forward on the issue of same-sex marriage despite being bordered by two countries which allow it — Belgium and Portugal.

Adoption is largely restricted to heterosexual married couples.

The Socialist Party took the issue of same-sex marriage to the polls at the 2007 presidential election under the country’s first female presidential candidate, Ségolène Royal, but failed to win government despite gaining 40 seats.

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