Thursday, March 01, 2007

Italy's Prodi headed back in government

Italy's beleagured PM Romano Prodi looks to be headed back to the PM's office, one week after he resigned over a defeat on foreign policy.

Last night, he won a vote of confidence in the Senate 162 to 157, allowing him to stay in office.

Prodi is juggling a very narrow nine party coalition which is a real mixed bag, ranging from hard line communists and Greens to centrist Catholics. The crux of the matter was Prodi had them sign on to a 12-point 'non-negotiable' agreement that supports Italy's international commitments, especially the 1,800-strong NATO peacekeeping force in Afghanistan.

Disagreement over that little item is what sparked the crisis in the first place.

The next step will be a vote of confidence in Italy's lower House, where Prodi has more of a majority.

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