Italy's PM Mario Draghi announces resignation

Italy's PM Mario Draghi announces resignation
Credit: Belga / Thierry Roge

Italy's Prime Minister Mario Draghi (74) announced his resignation on Thursday evening after coalition partner the Five Star Movement (M5S) failed to vote on a financial support package for Italian families and businesses in the Senate.

The Five Star Movement had announced in advance that it would not participate in the vote. In response, Draghi had stated that he would resign if that happened.

With 172 votes against 39, Draghi still won the confidence of the Senate, despite the absence of the M5S – thanks to the support of other major parties, including the Partito Democratico (PD) and the far-right Lega. However, he has now drawn his conclusions from the lack of support from his coalition partner, according to reports in local media.

M5S party leader Giuseppe Conte, the previous Italian Prime Minister, said that the country was facing an unprecedented economic and social crisis and that the government had not listened to his party's demands.

'Trust has disappeared'

After a meeting with Italy's President, Sergio Mattarella, Draghi reportedly did not put his resignation on the table, according to Italian news agency Ansa. Instead, he convened a Council of Ministers at 18:15, where he delivered a short speech announcing that he would step down this evening.

"Today's vote in Parliament is a very significant event from a political point of view. The majority of national unity that has supported this government since its creation is no more," Draghi said. "The pact of trust at the basis of government action has disappeared."

"In recent days, I have made every effort to continue along the common path, also trying to meet the demands that have been put to me by the political forces," he said. "As is evident from today's debate and vote in Parliament, this effort was not enough."

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