Italian government collapse following coalition fractures

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Publication Date June 2019-
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On 5 June 2019 Italy's Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte said he was ready to resign if rifts within the governing coalition, consisting of the League and the 5-Star-Movement (M5S) were not solved. He also asked the two parties to make a clear decision on the way forward. The coalition leaders, Matteo Salvini (the League) and Luigi Di Maio (M5S),  professed loyalty to the government the following day.

On 20 August, the Italian PM Giuseppe Conte resigned amid government tension ending 14 months of coalition. A no-confidence vote was scheduled on that day. In his speech, Conte criticised Salvani saying he had been working for his personal interest and didn't respect the rules nor his colleagues.

Further information:

The League and M5S formed a coalition government in June 2018 that turned sour, over disagreements on a range of issues, especially on the question how to address the escalating public spending crisis. League pushed for a flat tax, while the M5S focused on an introduction of a 9€ minimum hourly salary.

The split intensified after the League managed to double its vote in the European parliamentary election in May (34%) compared to its results in the general election in 2018 (17%). After the balance of power between both parties turned around, critics speculated that the League might attempt an early election. Salvini, Deputy Premier and Interior Minister, had been also criticised for acting as if he was already head of government.

Matteo Salvani publicly showed disagreements with Conte especially over the multi-billion euro high speed train line between Lyon and Turin, and the permission to dock humanitarian vessels in Italian ports. On 8 August, Salvani announced he wanted to put an end to the coalition. Eager to capitalise on his current popularity, he was calling for new election.

On 28 August, M5S and the centre-left Democratic party (PD) have agreed to try to form a new government in a move that could advert snap elections and push the far-right League into opposition. Members of M5S party voted by a large majority on 3 September in favour of a coalition with the PD. The new government with Giuseppe Conte as PM will take office in the following days.

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