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Overthrown by majority, Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte resigns

Is this the result of the political crisis that Italy has been going through for two weeks? Overthrown by his majority in the Senate, Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte submitted his resignation to the President of the Republic Sergio Mattarella and his ministers Tuesday, January 26. He hopes to get a new mandate to reform a government and regain support in Parliament.

The political crisis began on January 13 when Matteo Renzi, former prime minister and leader of the Italia Viva (IV) party, left the left-wing coalition of the Democratic Party (PD) and the anti-establishment party M5S, in the context of criticism of economic and health management. Since then, Prime Minister Conte has not had enough support to pass his reforms in Parliament.

However, he wears an ambitious € 200 billion recovery plan to try to pull the third-largest economy in the euro zone out of the health crisis that has already killed more than 85,000 from the coronavirus.

Right and far right in ambush

To stay in power and avoid resignation, Conte had to appear before parliament last week for a vote of confidence from both houses. Easy in the lower house, the Senate vote was won by a narrow margin, with only a relative majority after the withdrawal of Senators IV.

PD Secretary General Nicola Zingaretti said Monday night after Mr. Conte’s announcement that his troops support the formation of a new government with the outgoing Prime Minister, the third since 2018.

“The country is going through one of the worst moments in its history due to the pandemic and is in an absurd government crisis,” Foreign Minister Luigi Di Maio (M5S) tweeted. “We must all unite around Giuseppe Conte“, he said.

Should a government not be reformed, Italy would have to rely on dangerous early parliamentary elections that could see the right wing of Silvio Berlusconi (Forza Italia), associated with the extreme right (Lega and Fratelli d’Italia) win.

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