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13 Photos From Taiwan's First Same-Sex Buddhist Marriage

Huang Mei-yu and Yu Ya-ting wed Saturday in a traditional Buddhist ceremony. Their union still isn't recognized by the Taiwanese government, though support for gay marriage is mounting across Asia.

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SAM YEH / Getty Images

Huang Mei-yu (left) and Yu Ya-ting (right) have been together for seven years. On Aug. 11, they married in a Buddhist ceremony in Taiwan, where homosexuality is widely accepted, though same-sex marriage is still not recognized.

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Wally Santana / AP

Buddhist Master Shih Chao-hwei performed the ceremony, giving the women her full support: “I am certain you will lead a life of happiness together, especially after you have overcome so much difficulty and societal discrimination," she said. "You have blessings not only from the Buddha, but also from those whom you may or may not know who are in attendance.”

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Wally Santana / AP

A same-sex marriage legalization bill has been spurring debate in Taiwan for nearly 10 years. Although the bill hasn't been approved, it was the first of its kind in Asia.

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PICHI CHUANG / Reuters

Their parents did not attend the ceremony. “My parents have known my sexual orientation for many years, but at first, they couldn’t really accept it,” Huang told reporters. “Our parents originally agreed to come to our wedding, but they felt they were not prepared for the media exposure, so they decided not to come."

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PICHI CHUANG / Reuters

"I remember when I told my parents that we would get married, their first question was, 'Is this legal?'" Huang told reporters. "I could only say to them that it would soon, but I didn't know when would be considered soon. So we hope it will become legal. For us and for our families, it is very important."

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