By Stefan J. Bos, Chief International Correspondent Worthy News
Thursday’s move by President Sergio Mattarella came after several vital parties refused to form a coalition with Prime Minister Mario Draghi, prompting his resignation.
“The dissolution of the parliamentary chamber is always the last choice,” Mattarella said, noting the political circumstances gave him no other option.
The resignation of Draghi, a former European Central Bank president, and the prospect of early elections sent ripples through financial markets.
It brought back bad memories of Europe’s debt crisis a decade ago and complicated the ECB’s job as it raised interest rates Thursday for the first time in 11 years to combat colossal inflation.
Draghi suggested he was open to staying in power, but the threat of political changes as borrowing costs increase raised concerns that the 19-country eurozone could head into another economic crisis.
President Mattarella was due to announce new elections for the fall after saying they must be held within 70 days.
Italian media said Draghi had confirmed the vote would be on September 25.
“The period we are going through does not allow for any pause in the (government) action needed to counter the economic and social crisis and rising inflation,” the president added in a short address.
Mattarella asked Draghi to stay on for now as the head of a caretaker government that will have to move the nation through political and economic headwinds.
Polls showed the rightwing populist Fratelli d’Italia or ‘Brothers of Italy’ led by Giorgia Meloni could win the ballot with 24 percent of the vote.
Meloni said Friday that Fratelli d’Italia would be sending arms to Ukraine and back Kyiv in its war against Russia if winning the ballot.
The party was among the few Italian parties that endorsed Prime Minister Draghi’s decision to ship arms to Ukraine, even though it was in opposition to his government.
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