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Italy's Salvini says will submit no-confidence vote

Italy's Salvini says will submit no-confidence vote

Though 5-Star has more parliamentary seats than the League, Salvini's party now has twice as much voter support.

Conte has demanded Salvini, who is also interior minister, lay out his reasons in Parliament for refusing to no longer back the government he helped form after 2018 elections brought populists to power for the first time in Italy.

Until a few weeks ago, Salvini had repeatedly said that the government would last a full five-year term, but he brushed off Conte's criticisms and said 5-Star was holding up "the politically incorrect reforms that Italy needs" to boost its stagnant economy.

By filing the no-confidence motion on Friday, Salvini has pre-empted that possibility. However, Forza Italia politicians could try to use their numbers in parliament to block any rush to early elections if Salvini spurns them.

"The only thing I am interested in is that we fix a date for the election".

"Salvini came to tell me that the League intends to interrupt this experience in government and to call for a vote in order to capitalize on the consensus his party now enjoys", Conte told reporters at a nationally televised press conference.

The deputy prime minister has called for early elections, saying the government no longer has a majority.

Salvini's anti-migrant, anti-NGO stance is credited with the League's surge in popularity.

Italy's ruling coalition is facing collapse after the head of one of the governing parties called for a new election.

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"I already clarified with Salvini during our meetings that this crisis that he triggered will be the moist transparent crisis in the history of the republic", Conte said.

The 5-Star Movement, which opposes the high-speed train link as too costly and unnecessary, replied that the League's note was "not comprehensible", and asked the party to clearly state what it wants.

Salvini regularly rails against European Union budget rigor, insisting that more state spending on infrastructure will get Italy's long-stagnant economy growing again.

The decision to dissolve the government and call new elections rests with Mattarella.

Mr Salvini's ex-coalition partner has accused him of betraying the electorate after 14 months of government.

Conte, who is not affiliated with either party, has accused Salvini of wanting an early vote to allow the League to profit from now favorable voter sentiment, with opinion polls showing the party as being likely to comfortably win any election in the coming months.

Both houses of parliament are now on recess for the holidays and are not due back until September.

Lawmakers "should move their rear ends and come to Parliament, if need be, even next week, because millions of Italians are also working the next week, and the week after", Salvini told a sea of cheering supporters Thursday night in Pescara, a small city on the Adriatic.

"This government's only option is to let Italians have their say" by calling elections, it added.


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