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Italy's Renzi struggles to win support for new government

Published on Feb 16, 2014 10:29 PM
 
Florence mayor Matteo Renzi, poised to become Italy's youngest-ever prime minister after the ouster of Enrico Letta, ran into stumbling blocks on Sunday, Feb 16, 2014, as he tried to shore up support for a new coalition government. -- FILE PHOTO: REUTERS

ROME (AFP) - Florence mayor Matteo Renzi, poised to become Italy's youngest-ever prime minister after the ouster of Enrico Letta, ran into stumbling blocks on Sunday as he tried to shore up support for a new coalition government.

Italian media said it was widely expected that President Giorgio Napolitano would formally ask Renzi, 39, on Monday to form a government, after holding consultations with political leaders.

But behind the scenes horse-trading with possible allies on the right and left seem to be more complicated than expected.

Alessandro Baricco, a writer and close friend of Renzi, turned down an offer to head the culture ministry, while Andrea Guerra, chief executive of Luxottica group, the world's largest eyewear company, rejected an offer to become minister for economic development, press reports said.

 
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