Italy: Senate passes watered-down bill recognising same-sex civil unions

Italy has taken a step towards joining every other major country in western Europe with the passage of a landmark civil unions bill in the senate that will give legal recognition to same-sex couples for the first time in Italian history.

The bill overcame staunch opposition from the Roman Catholic church and last-minute political manoeuvring by opponents of the Italian prime minister, Matteo Renzi, that nearly derailed the legislation. 

While it was the first significant win for gay rights following years of failed attempts, Thursday’s developments were nevertheless greeted as a hollow victory by many LGBT activists because the bill was watered down days before its passage.  Read more via the Guardian