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News Summary: Portugal may call snap election

The Associated Press

People, seen in silhouette, shout slogans during a protest by main Portuguese workers union General Confederation of Portuguese Workers, CGTP, in Lisbon, Saturday, July 6, 2013. The protestors demanded the resignation of the Portuguese centre-right coalition government, the dissolving of the Portuguese parliament and early general election. (AP Photo/Francisco Seco)

WEIGHTY DECISION: Portugal's president is consulting the country's political parties before deciding whether to call a snap election. Two key ministers resigned last week due to disagreements over budget austerity policies, and the departures left the coalition government near collapse.

THE OPTIONS: Opposition parties are demanding elections two years ahead of schedule. But President Anibal Cavaco Silva could try a Cabinet reshuffle to end the squabble dividing coalition partners.

THE ISSUES: The coalition parties disagree on debt-cutting measures the country is required to enact in return for its $100 billion bailout two years ago. The junior Popular Party wants greater emphasis on economic growth policies.