Portugal's parliament voted in favor of legalizing euthanasia for the third time in less than a year on Thursday, but the country's Constitutional Court or president could prevent the resolution from becoming law.

Lawmakers have approved four legislations that would legalize euthanasia and physician-assisted suicide.

A law proposed by the ruling center-left Socialist Party was approved by a vote of 128-88, with five abstentions.

The other three bills, which originated from tiny parties of the center-left, passed by nearly comparable margins.

The measures require the consent of the head of state to become law. President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa has the option of vetoing the bill or sending it back to the Constitutional Court for review.

The failure of the previous two measures was mostly due to their vague terms.

A few dozen individuals held a silent protest in front of the parliament building in Lisbon, the capital, throughout the debate and voting.

When a physician directly delivers lethal medications to a patient, this is euthanasia.

Medically assisted suicide occurs when a patient self-administers a deadly medicine under the guidance of a physician.

Isabel Moreira, a Socialist politician who backed the bill, described the legislation as "an invitation to comprehend others: When in doubt, demonstrate tolerance."

The highest court in Portugal banned a law in March 2021, citing its "vague" language. In November, the president rejected a second bill passed by parliament.

Paulo Rios, a member of the principal opposition party, the Social Democratic Party, rejected the law and asked, "Are we overlooking other treatments for fatal and incurable diseases?"

Moreira stated that further clarification was required regarding whether the proposed law would solely apply to incurable illnesses or if it might be expanded to include deadly or severe conditions.

However, none of the four new proposals address the specific concerns of Rebelo de Sousa. Instead, they attempt to simplify justifications for euthanasia and physician-assisted suicide by referring to "a scenario of excruciating suffering, with a permanent injury of high severity or a terrible and incurable disease."

The president is unlikely to appreciate this omission.

The four bills are then referred to a committee, where they will likely be merged into a single bill before being voted on again and delivered to the head of state. This procedure may take months.

Left-of-center parties in the predominantly Catholic nation supported euthanasia legislation, as they did with abortion legislation in 2007 and same-sex marriage legislation in 2010.