TALLIN, October 9 (RAPSI) - Last Thursday the Estonian parliament passed a law on civil partnerships, including those of same-sex couples, which evoked negative response from the majority of citizens, RIA Novosti reports on Thursday.

Forty members voted for the law, 38 members voted against and ten abstained. The Estonian parliament has a total of 101 members. The law will take effect on January 1, 2016.

The law will allow couples, regardless of gender, to officially register their relationship and to exercise marriage related property and inheritance rights. To register a partnership, the couple will need to sign a notarized agreement. As a result, same-gender couples in Estonia will be able to officially register their relationship and adopt the children of one of the partners. However, the couples will not be allowed to adopt other children.

This Wednesday, the parliament rejected a proposal by Pro Patria and Res Publica Union, a national conservative party, to hold a referendum on civil partnerships. IRL was the only one of four parliamentary parties to oppose the law. Still, there were supporters and opponents in each of the parliamentary parties.

Last week, TNS Emor, a public survey company in Estonia, published results of a poll on the legal recognition of gay families. The poll was commissioned by the Family and Traditions Foundation and was conducted between September 16 and 29. One thousand people aged 15 to 75 participated. The survey found that 67% of Estonians do not support the legalization of same-sex marriages.