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2,000 same-sex couples joined in civil partnership

MORE than two same-sex couples are celebrating civil partnerships in Ireland every day, new figures have shown.

Up to the end of December, 965 civil unions had taken place in Ireland.

"Civil Partnerships are a resounding success. Almost 2,000 lesbian or gay people, of all ages and from all parts of the country, have entered civil partnerships in Ireland since they became available in April 2011," said Kieran Rose of the Gay and Lesbian Equality Network.

The group said the figures do not account for the hundreds of lesbian and gay couples who were married or entered a civil partnership abroad.

Mr Rose said: "In every county and every city across Ireland, lesbian and gay couples are celebrating their love and commitment in front of family, friends and communities.

"These couples and their celebrations are changing forever the perceptions of lesbian and gay relationships."

Same-sex partnerships accounted for 2pc of all unions in Ireland in 2012.

Figures for 2012 released by the Department of Social Protection show a total of 429 civil partnerships were registered last year alone.

Among the high-profile people who entered civil partnerships was Ireland AM's Alan Hughes, who signed the papers with his long-term love Karl Broderick in September 2011.