Catholic Portugal, traditionally one of Europe's most socially conservative countries, is expected to approve the legalization of gay marriage on Friday. It's catching on people! :)
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. On Tuesday, campaigners handed a petition with more than 90,000 signatures to demand a referendum on the subject into parliament.
An earthquake measuring 6.3 on the Richter scale shook southern Spain and Portugal early Thursday, Spain's seismological institute said. There were no immediate reports of major damage or casualties.
Hey, sometimes the earth has to move for people to take notice.