Wednesday, January 20, 2021

Italy’s Conte survives close Senate vote, pledges to forge ahead | Al Jazeera

Italy’s Conte survives close Senate vote

Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte has narrowly won a confidence vote in Italy’s Senate, the upper house, allowing him to remain in office after a junior partner quit his coalition last week in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic.

However, Conte failed to secure an absolute majority during Tuesday night’s vote, meaning he now heads a minority government that will struggle to implement its policy programme at a time of severe national emergency.

Having overcome a similar confidence motion in the lower house on Monday, Conte won in the 321-seat Senate by 156 to 140, with 16 abstentions.

Looking to head off speculation he might resign following the close vote, Conte said he would seek to bolster his support in parliament. In the meantime, he promised to focus on tackling the country’s twin health and economic crises.

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