FM Gentiloni named Italy’s new PM

FM Gentiloni named Italy’s new PM

FM Gentiloni named Italy’s new PM Italian Foreign Minister Paolo Gentiloni was named Dec. 11 as Italy’s new prime minister following reformist leader Matteo Renzi’s resignation in the wake of a crushing referendum defeat.

Gentiloni, who had been Renzi’s foreign minister, was asked by President Sergio Mattarella to form a new government that will guide Italy to elections due by February 2018, a presidency spokesman announced, according to AFP.

Gentiloni, 62, is seen as a close ally of Renzi who is unlikely to get in the way of the outgoing premier’s plans for a political comeback.

Renzi remains leader of his Democratic Party (PD) and has made it clear he plans to fight the next election as its candidate to head a new government.

Gentiloni now has to put together his own government line up which is expected to be put to a parliamentary confidence vote on Dec. 14.

Mattarella had vowed Dec. 10 to move quickly to fill the void created by Renzi’s departure, saying the country urgently needed a new administration to handle a string of pressing problems.

Chief among those is a looming crisis in the troubled banking sector and ongoing relief efforts after a series of deadly earthquakes between August and October.