Italy draws closer to M5S-League cabinet
11 May, 2018
League leader Matteo Salvini and 5-Star Movement (M5S) leader Luigi Di Maio said last Thursday that they were making progress in talks on the formation of a new Italian government after a meeting at the Lower House, ANSA reported. “Significant steps forward have been made on the composition of the executive and the premier with the aim of deciding everything in a short period of time to give a response and a political government to the country as soon as possible,” a joint statement said. A day earlier, ex-premier and Forza Italia (FI) leader Silvio Berlusconi opened the way for the talks, saying he would not consider the centre-right coalition to have broken down, if its ally - the Eurosceptic and anti-migrant League - forms a government with the M5S. The anti-establishment group had refused to negotiate with the centre right as a whole, saying it was only willing to form an executive with the League. The League and FI govern many regions together. Berlusconi stressed, however, that FI would not vote in favour of a confidence motion on a M5S-League government. The League and the M5S would not need FI's support to have a majority in parliament because they won over half of the vote in March's general election.
On Monday, President Sergio Mattarella warned parties that if they couldn't reach consensus to form cabinet and to avoid new early elections, he would propose a “neutral government” to take over until December. Both M5S and the League said they were not in favour of such scenario.