Today: Sunday, 14 August 2022 year

Italy: Five Star Movement rejects ex-PM Berlusconi on eve of formal talks

Italy: Five Star Movement rejects ex-PM Berlusconi on eve of formal talks

Though Berlusconi had put the rightwing block together, the former prime minister was rejected because of his young ally Matteo Salvini’s League party that received the most votes. Thus, Salvini has been keen to assert his position as leader of the RW-group, TheLocalItaly reported.

After the March election, Five Star is the single largest party, with the PD second, but both trail the combined seat total won by League and Forza. None of Five Star, PD or the centre-right has enough seats to govern alone. The talks could last for weeks. It all depends whether and when a large enough portion of the main parties are able to make an agreement, and whether Italian President Sergio Mattarella can be convinced that they could form a workable government.

For Five Star Movement, the great experience of Berlusconi in the forming of the workable cabinet would be extremely useful. But they rejected the former PM. League leader, Matteo Salvini, said on Facebook that they will dialogue with Five Star, but reject vetoes or commands.

In an interview recorded by the La7 TV channel and not yet broadcast, Luigi Di Maio said Five Star was open to talks with the centre-left Democratic party (PD) – though not to its ex-secretary Matteo Renzi – and the far-right League, but not with Forza Italia, two Five Star members confirmed.

On Wednesday, President Mattarella spoke to the speakers of Italy’s two houses of parliament, his own predecessor Giorgio Napolitano, and the representatives of Italy’s autonomous regions and smaller political groups. The Italian leader can also call another general election, which would likely take place before the end of the year.

If this is the case, an interim government (either a large coalition, or a M5S-League government with a limited mandate) would be given a limited mandate, possibly including the task of rewriting the electoral law in order to produce a majority in the next vote.