New Italian prime minister sworn in

April 28, 2013 at 12:13 PM
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ROME, April 28 (UPI) -- U.S. President Barack Obama sent his congratulations to Enrico Letta, who was sworn in Sunday as prime minister of Italy.

Letta took the oath of office at a ceremony attended by President Giorgio Napolitano, who was himself recently inaugurated to a second term, and a cadre of 21 Cabinet ministers who held their first official meeting later in the day.

"The president looks forward to working closely with Prime Minister Letta and President Napolitano as our two countries jointly seek to promote trade, jobs, and growth on both sides of the Atlantic and tackle today's complex security challenges," the White House said in a written statement. said despite the sentiment from Washington, the Letta-Napolitano coalition government faces some potent potential challenges. The coalition includes former Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi's People of Freedom Party, and some political observers in Italy have doubts it will last long with such diverse members.

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