Updated: Sunday, 23 March 2014 06:29 | By Agence France-Presse

Court suspends same-sex marriage in Michigan

An appeals court on Saturday temporarily suspended same-sex marriages in Michigan, local media said, just the latest US state to wrestle with the thorny issue of gay rights.

Court suspends same-sex marriage in Michigan

Same-sex couples get married in a group ceremony at the Oakland County Courthouse on March 22, 2014 in Pontiac, Michigan - by Bill Pugliano

"To allow a more reasoned consideration of the motion to stay, it is ordered that the District Court's judgment is temporarily stayed until Wednesday," The Detroit News reported, citing the federal court order.

On Friday, a federal judge in the midwestern state struck down a gay-marriage ban and found there was no "credible" evidence that heterosexual couples make better parents.

That decision was the latest in a number of court rulings to find gay-marriage bans unconstitutional.

The challenge to Michigan's prohibition was brought by two foster mothers who argued their children were harmed by the fact that the marriage ban prevented them from being jointly adopted.

Michigan's Republican Attorney General Bill Schuette then immediately filed an appeal.

Federal judges in Kentucky, Ohio, Oklahoma, Texas, Utah and Virginia have recently ruled in favor of marriage for lesbian and gay couples, as has the New Mexico Supreme Court.

The rulings follow a landmark Supreme Court decision in June finding that couples in same-sex marriages were entitled to the same benefits and protections as their heterosexual counterparts.

Marriage laws are governed by individual US states, nearly 30 of which have amended their constitutions to ban same-sex marriage.

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