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Italian senate approves new government

Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte reacts after a confidence vote in the senate in Rome, Italy, on September 10, 2019. (Photo by Reuters)

Max Civili 
Press TV, Rome 


Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte's new government has won the second of two confidence votes in the senate after passing the first test easily on Monday.

On Tuesday, Italian senators voted 169 to 133 in favor of the government coalition between the anti-establishment Five Star Movement and center-left Democratic Party. Five senators abstained from voting.

The vote followed a heated debate in the upper house during which the prime minister was repeatedly interrupted with derisive comments by senators from opposition parties.

Long-time fierce rivals, the 5SM and the DP have sealed an accord after League leader and former interior minister Matteo Salvini unilaterally backed out of Conte's first executive post last month.

Conte also said his executive would change Salvini's controversial migrant and security decrees that make it easier to deport asylum seekers and impose heavy fines on NGO rescue-vessels defying entry bans.

Former European commissioner Mario Monti led a national emergency government made up of technocrats between 2011 and 2013 to steer Italy through the debt crisis.

Prime Minister Conte’s wide-ranging policy program includes growth-boosting measures to revive the country’s stagnant economy, averting a big value-added tax (VAT) hike set to kick in next year and advance rapidly with a new legislation aimed at cutting the number of Italy's lawmakers.

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