A judge in Paraguay has refused to register the marriage of a gay couple who legally tied the knot in neighbouring Argentina.

On Thursday, Judge Nery Kunzle rejected Cazal Simon and Sergio Lopez’s request to register their marriage.

The judge quoted articles 49, 50 and 51 of Paraguay’s constitution that states marriage is only formed by a man and a woman.

Cazal Simon told the Washington Blade that despite the ruling, he and his husband will continue to raise public awareness of the discrimination faced by LGBT people in Paraguay.

They are both members of the gay rights group Somosgay.

“It is a decision that we were expecting, based on the judge’s previous history,” Mr Cazal said, noting he hopes to eventually bring the case before the country’s Supreme Court and may potentially also petition the Inter-American Court of Human Rights.

On Tuesday, the Uruguayan Senate passed a bill which would allow gay and lesbian couples to marry.

President José Mujica has said he will sign it into law once the country’s House of Deputies gives it final approval.

Argentina legalised equal marriage in 2010.