Italian President Sergio Mattarella has appointed IMF official Carlo Cottarelli as the interim prime minister tasked with forming a new government.
The PM said elections will be held no later than August unless he wins the confidence of parliament.
President Mattarella announced his choice Monday, having diluted the deal between two Eurosceptic parties who had collective majority in the March elections and had since dedicated themselves to forming a new government.
The newly-appointed PM Cottarelli vowed to establish a new government “very quickly” to take the country through this period before fresh elections are held in the fall of 2018 or early next year. “I’ll present myself to parliament with a program which – if it wins the backing of parliament – would include the approval of the 2019 budget. Then parliament would be dissolved with elections at the beginning of 2019,” Cottarelli said shortly after being named interim prime minister.
Following the rejection of Paolo Savona’s candidacy for minister of economy, ex PM-designate Conte said he had given up on attempts to form a government, leaving open the possibility the country would face new elections. Furious with Mattarella for sabotaging their deal over the choice for economy minister, the eurosceptic coalition slammed the country’s establishment for jeopardising democracy.
Italian journalist Marcello Foa believes that Mattarella’s move could be easily defined as illegitimate as “there is no constitutional reason and no constitutional power to block a government that has the majority in parliament.” Foa blasted the decision as “really shocking,” as it’s becoming quite obvious that the president is not acting in Italy’s best interests, but rather in the interests of the EU which he does not wish to “disturb.”