16 May 2016
Over in Catholic dominated Italy, the European country's lower parliamentary assembly has passed a bill allowing for legalised same-sex civil unions, ending its lonely status as the only Western European country not to do so.
The bill, in the works since 2013, passed by 372 to 51 votes with 99 abstentions and had required the government to win a vote of confidence for the bill to be voted on without amendments which would have slowed down its progress even further.
A number of conservative politicians have already said they plan to launch a referendum to repeal the legislation, characterising it as 'a direct attack on the family." Catholic groups which campaigned against the bill were not supported by the Pope who said in February that he does not meddle in Italian politics.
The bill now needs to be signed into law by Italy's president and may become law as early as July.