News ID: 214697
Published: 0618 GMT May 08, 2018

Stalemate leading Italy to repeat of parliamentary elections

Stalemate leading Italy to repeat of parliamentary elections
Italian President Sergio Mattarella (C) arrives to address journalists after consultations with political parties, at the Quirinale palace in Rome, on May 7, 2018.

Italy’s two largest political parties have rejected a call by President Sergio Mattarella to agree to a “neutral government,” leading the country toward a possible repeat of parliamentary elections.

President Sergio Mattarella said in a televised statement on Monday that there was no hope for a coalition deal. He urged the country’s parties to rally behind a “neutral government” that he said he would appoint this week but said the only alternative would be a swift re-vote following the inconclusive elections in March, reported.

“Let the parties decide of their own free will if they should give full powers to a government... or else new elections [should be held] immediately in the month of July or the fall,” Mattarella said.

However, Italy’s two largest parties, the far-right League and the anti-establishment 5-Star Movement — which have enough seats between them in parliament to prevent any government from winning the confidence votes needed to take office — rapidly expressed their opposition to the proposal.

“[We have] no faith in a ‘neutral government,’ which is synonymous with a government of technocrats. We are going to vote in July,” the head of 5-Star, Luigi Di Maio, tweeted.

League leader Matteo Salvini made similar remarks. “There is no time to lose; there is no space for a technocrat government,” he said.

Italy has been stuck in political limbo since the March 4 elections, in which no single party secured a majority.

The 5-Star emerged as the single largest group while an alliance of rightist parties, including the anti-immigrant League, took the most seats.


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