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      Teller Report

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      Italy: likely clap of end for the populist government


      Italy: likely clap of end for the populist government

      Rome (AFP)

      The ruling populist coalition in Italy, which League leader Matteo Salvini has blown up, is expected to be buried on Tuesday with a long-awaited statement by Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte in the Senate and his likely resignation.

      All eyes will be riveted at 15:00 local time (13:00 GMT) on Mr. Conte, who could before the Senate pronounce a scathing diatribe against Mr. Salvini, his far-right Deputy Prime Minister, after 14 months of unprecedented populist governance.

      According to one of the most likely scenarios, Mr. Conte should, after his speech, present his resignation to President Sergio Mattarella. Putting an end to the 65th government of the Italian Republic and paving the way for consultations to form a new government.

      Matteo Salvini, who will also speak in the Senate, may try again to overthrow the government through a motion of censure, even if this is unlikely to prevail numerically.

      On August 8, he shattered the alliance between his party and the Movement Five Stars (M5S, anti-system) Luigi Di Maio. Saying he was tired of arguments with his ally, opposed for example to major projects like the TGV Lyon-Turin, he decreed that there was no more majority and demanded elections in the fall, with its popularity in polls (36 to 38% of voting intentions).

      But Giuseppe Conte, an unknown public advocate who headed up the government last year, reacted by demanding that the proceedings be held in Parliament.

      And in recent days, he went out of his reserve, denouncing the refusal of Mr. Salvini to land the miners of the ship of the Spanish NGO Open Arms.

      Against all odds, the partition is now played between the M5S and the Democratic Party (PD, center left), in search of an alliance to block the leader of the League.

      - Mobilization "in the street"? -

      Exasperated, Matteo Salvini called Sunday night his supporters to protest against such a prospect.

      "We will be peacefully in the street," he warned during a meeting, explaining that it should "pass over his body" to reach an alliance between M5S and the PD, with the former Prime Minister Matteo Renzi at the maneuver.

      Faced with the risk of being marginalized, Mr. Salvini softened the tone with regard to the head of government: "Conte remains my prime minister and my phone is always on".

      The founder of M5S, comedian Beppe Grillo, reunited the M5S tenors on Sunday in his country house and rejected attempts to reconcile Salvini, described as "unreliable interlocutor".

      For his part, Romano Prodi, former head of government and former president of the European Commission, proposed forming a "pro-European coalition" that could unite PD, M5S and Forza Italia, the center-right party of Silvio Berlusconi, to allow a "reintegration of Italy as an active member of the European Union".

      He went so far as to baptize such a executive similar to the big German coalitions, "Ursula", in reference to the new German President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, who brought together MEPs from all three parties vote of his investiture.

      During his 14 months at the Ministry of the Interior, Mr. Salvini left his office to travel the country, in perpetual election campaign.

      His messages hammered also on social networks on issues - stopping migrant arrivals, denouncing a justice deemed too lax to offenders, economic priority to Italians - allowed him to fly in the polls and phagocyte any attention.

      Facing him, Luigi di Maio, young Neapolitan 33 years old, inexperienced and not very charismatic leader of M5S, in the shoes of a Minister of Economic Development does not keep all his promises, lost ground constantly in the polls.

      Everything remains possible in the very creative Italian political landscape, the contours of which will be dictated by the political parties: a government M5S-PD? early elections in the fall or spring of 2020? Even a new M5S-League coalition.

      ? 2019 AFP

      Source: france24

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