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Italy's premier Matteo Renzi mulls confidence vote to pass gay rights bill

Italian prime minister Matteo Renzi is considering resorting to a risky confidence vote in the Senate to ensure the passage of a bill allowing civil unions, but not marriage, for gay couples.

He told his Democratic Party members on Sunday he is "ready" to use the tactic on the bill if needed.

Pro-Vatican senators among the Democrats have refused to back the bill because one provision allows for adoption of the gay partner's biological child. A coalition party led by his interior minister also insists the adoption provision be jettisoned.

Mr Renzi has expressed frustration that the bill bogged down, considering that he has shepherded through other reforms.

Democratic Party leaders will decide their strategy this week. Losing a confidence vote would force the resignation of Mr Renzi, starting his third year in office.

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