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Pope backs civil unions for gay couples in new documentary

ROME: Pope Francis on Wednesday voiced support for same-sex couples, calling them "children of God" and saying they should be allowed to have legally recognised civil unions, in a radical shift from previous pontiffs.

The pope, whose opposition to gay marriage remains unchanged, said this in a documentary that premiered at the Rome Film Festival.

"These are children of God, they have the right to a family. What we have to create is a law of civil union, they have the right to be legally protected," he said in film-maker Evgeny Afineevsky's Francesco.

But while Pope Francis has previously spoken about same-sex unions, he has always voiced opposition to gay marriage.

"Always among human beings, and not only in the Church, it has been between a man and a woman. You can't just change that like that," he told French sociologist Dominique Wolton in a 2017 book. - AFP

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