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Spain approves new law to calm outcry over evictions but opponents not happy

Spain's parliament has approved a new mortgage law it hopes will calm a national outcry over the dramatic increase in evictions in recent years but anti-eviction lobbyists said the law was insufficient.

The bill was approved Thursday on the strength of the governing Popular Party's absolute majority with opposition parties all voting against.

Repossessions because of mortgage nonpayment have soared since Spain's economic crisis began in 2008. Property registrars say about 30,000 primary residence owners were evicted last year.

Spaniards are angry that most people still have to pay off their mortgage debt even after eviction.

The new law offers those with payment difficulties more opportunities to keep their houses, but ignored opponents' demand for an insolvency law to allow defaulters to simply turn in the keys to their homes.