Italy: Napolitano not stepping down early

March 30, 2013 at 12:42 PM
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ROME, March 30 (UPI) -- Italian President Giorgio Napolitano, whose term expires in May, said Saturday he will not step down early as a way to end a political deadlock in his country.

Napolitano's comments came after Italian media reported he may resign early in an attempt to end the stalemate that has prevented a government from forming since the Italian general election last month, CNN reported.

Instead, Napolitano said he will form two groups made up of professionals from different political backgrounds who will create specific proposals on issues, and then try to gain approval from the Democratic Party and the People of Freedom party. Pasquale Cascella, the president's spokesman, said the groups would be "facilitators of the political solution, a model already adopted by countries like Belgium and Holland."

Italy's parliament has been deadlocked since the February elections, during which the Democratic Party took control of the House but the People of Freedom, headed by former Premier Silvio Berlusconi, has control of the Senate, Italy's ANSA news agency reported.

Democratic Party head Pier Luigi Bersani has been working with comedian-turned-politician Beppe Grillo's 5-Star Movement party to form an alliance. However, Grillo has rejected Bersani's proposal.

Bersani has rejected an offer from Berlusconi to form a coalition.

Berlusconi has also reached out to Napolitano about a potential alliance between the two parties.

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