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Bettel marriage grabs international headlines
Culture & Life

Bettel marriage grabs international headlines

2 min. 12.05.2015 From our online archive
The marriage of Luxembourg Prime Minister Xavier Bettel to his partner Gauthier Destenay, scheduled for later this week, has already been making international headlines.

(CS) The marriage of Luxembourg Prime Minister Xavier Bettel to his partner Gauthier Destenay, scheduled for later this week, has already been making international headlines.

The online edition of the UK's Independent on Monday reported on the upcoming nuptials, pointing out once again that Luxembourg is the only country in the world to have both an openly gay Prime Minister and Deputy PM, Etienne Schneider.

The article also goes on to educate its readers: “And, if you were curious, the correct term to describe a person from Luxembourg is 'Luxembourger'.”

However, it does get the country's name somewhat wrong, referring to it as a “tiny duchy”. As Jean-Claude Juncker said at a European School event as PM in 2013 – there are only two “great” countries in the EU, Great Britain (“Grand Bretagne”) and the Grand Duchy (“Grand Duché”).

The news was also picked up by a number of LGBT news websites, all of which refer to a anonymous source close to the couple who spoke to French press agency Agence France Presse (AFP) about the wedding.

But do not expect the wedding to be a big media event.

"He does not want to put his private life in the public spotlight and he has turned down requests from the celebrity magazines to cover the event," a source commented to AFP. 

No time for honeymoon, Bettel says

A quick Google search reveals substantial international interest in the wedding, set to take place later this week. Media outlets from France to Hungary have dedicated articles to the event.

Bettel last August confided to the LA Times in an interview that his partner had asked him to marry. “He asked me and I said 'yes',” Bettel said at the time. The pair have been in a registered partnership since 2010.

Destenay works as an architect and has accompanied Bettel to a number of official events, also during his time as mayor of Luxembourg City, such as the royal wedding of Prince Guillaume and Pricess Stéphanie in 2012.

A honeymoon is meanwhile not on the horizon, Bettel said at a financial sector event on Monday evening. Instead, he will be travelling to Kazakhstan for the Astana Economic Forum. Luxembourg until recently was blacklisted in the country.

Same-sex marriage was legalised in Luxembourg by parliament last year, with the law having come into effect on January 1 this year.