Italy’s prime minister looks to resign

ROME (Reuters) – National newspapers reported on Monday that Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte is close to resigning but then hopes to form a new government that can count on a wider majority.

„My goal is to find an agreement that gives a clear political perspective to the ruling until the end of the legislation,“ Conte was quoted by La Repubblica newspaper.

The report added that Conte may hand over his resignation to the head of state as early as Tuesday, then form a new coalition that would rely on the centrist parliamentarians and the so-called „officials.“

There was no immediate comment from the Prime Minister’s Office.

Conte’s government plunged into turmoil earlier this month when a junior partner, the Italia FIFA party led by former prime minister Matteo Renzi, withdrew from the government in a row over its handling of the coronavirus crisis.

Although Conte survived a subsequent vote of confidence in Parliament last week, he failed to secure an absolute majority in the Senate, which means he will struggle to enact any political agenda unless he can garner new support.

The prime minister pleaded with center and nonpartisan senators to join the ranks of the government, but so far few have responded.

The Corriere della Sera newspaper said Conte wanted to reinstate Renzi and was looking forward to forming a „government of national safety“ that also had the support of some moderate politicians from the right of center.

In an effort to pressure lawmakers, the main ruling parties said early elections, two years ahead of schedule, would be the only way out of the political impasse unless a solution was found quickly.

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