Italy to draft civil unions bill

Italy to draft civil unions bill

[JURIST] Italian lawmakers are planning to draft legislation that would give some legal recognition to same-sex unions [JURIST news archive], officials from the Italian Senate [official website] said Thursday. Senate leaders have requested that a bill be drafted by January 31 that would give legal status to unions of all unmarried couples, both heterosexual and homosexual, for tax purposes and otherwise.

The new center-left government of Italian Prime Minister Romano Prodi [official website; BBC profile] promised before taking office last May to consider recognizing civil unions. The government's position has already prompted condemnation from the Vatican [JURIST report], with Pope Benedict denouncing any legal recognition of same-sex couples. AFP has more. AKI has local coverage.