- Title: Italian PM Renzi addresses Democratic Party ahead of resignation
- Date: 7th December 2016
- Summary: ROME, ITALY (DECEMBER 7, 2016) (REUTERS) ***WARNING CONTAINS FLASH PHOTOGRAPHY*** CROWD GATHERING OUTSIDE DEMOCRATIC PARTY HEADQUARTERS VARIOUS OF RENZI SUPPORTERS HOLDING POSTERS READING (Italian): "RENZI IS MY PARTY SECRETARY" SUPPORTERS HOLDING PLACARDS READING (Italian): "PD GO BACK TO SCARING OFF THE RIGHT", "SECRETARY DON'T GIVE UP" AND "VOTE AS SOON AS POSSIBLE" MEDIA OUTSIDE PARTY HEADQUARTERS VEHICLE CARRYING ITALIAN PRIME MINISTER, MATTEO RENZI, ARRIVING AT PARTY HEADQUARTERS
- Embargoed: 22nd December 2016 18:11
- Keywords: Italy Democratic Party Prime Minister Matteo Renzi resignation
- Location: ROME, ITALY
- City: ROME, ITALY
- Country: Italy
- Reuters ID: LVA0015BVYR0N
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: EDITORS PLEASE NOTE: PART LIVE STREAMING QUALITY
Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi thanked his party on Wednesday (December 7) during an address at the Democratic Party headquarters before heading to the presidential palace tender his resignation.
Renzi first vowed to step down on Monday (December 5) after a bruising referendum loss at the weekend with most parliamentary factions pushing for an early election in the spring.
But President Sergio Mattarella, whose powers include naming prime ministers and dissolving parliament, persuaded him to stay on until parliament approved the 2017 budget, which it did on Wednesday afternoon.
"An internal process clearly needs to take place and I think will be difficult. It will be very tough to have the clarity that the Democratic Party needs but I think we need to get to that after we have faced the government crisis that is about to officially unfold," Renzi told his party during his address.
The 41-year-old's decision to quit after less than three years in office dealt a new blow to Western governments still in shock from Britain's vote to leave the European Union and the election of outsider Donald Trump as president of the United States.
The political crisis sparked by the referendum coincides with a crisis in Italy's debt-laden banks, especially at its third-biggest lender Monte dei Paschi di Siena, which looks likely to require government intervention to survive.
Mattarella is likely to ask Renzi to remain in office in a caretaker capacity for an unspecified period, during which time he might end up having to resolve the situation at Monte dei Paschi.
Italy is not due to hold a parliamentary election before 2018. While there is a growing consensus that schedule should be accelerated by a year, Mattarella wants parliament to draft a new electoral law beforehand.
Both the anti-establishment 5-Star Movement and right-wing parties Northern League and Brothers of Italy are pushing hard for an early vote.
Silvio Berlusconi's Forza Italia and a left-wing minority inside Renzi's own Democratic Party (PD) want a new administration to be formed within the current parliament that would take charge until 2018.
The PD has the largest number of parliamentarians, so it is unlikely any new government could be formed without Renzi's backing.
Two PD sources said on Tuesday (December 6) that the party plans to support a government of national unity, which would have to include parties currently in opposition. If such a government is not possible, then the PD wants an early election, they said.
- Copyright Holder: REUTERS
- Copyright Notice: (c) Copyright Thomson Reuters 2016. Open For Restrictions - http://about.reuters.com/fulllegal.asp
- Usage Terms/Restrictions: None