LISBON (AFP) – Catholic Portugal, traditionally one of Europe's most socially conservative countries, is expected to approve the legalisation of gay marriage on Friday with a minimum of fuss.
With the governing Socialists and other left-wing parties enjoying a strong majority, the new law is likely to sail through the first reading debate and gain final approval before a visit by Pope Benedict XVI, due in Portugal in May.
If the gay marriage proposals do pass through parliament, they will the have to go through a parliamentary commission before coming back for the final approval.
According to media reports, both the government and the Catholic Church wants the gay marriage issue to be resolved before the visit of the pope, scheduled for May 11-14.
Thanks to Ann for reminding me of this. I guess this map needs to be updated! (click for a closer view)