December 13, 2016 / 6:35 PM / 7 months ago

Italy PM wins initial vote of confidence in lower house of parliament

1 Min Read

ROME (Reuters) - Italian Prime Minister Paolo Gentiloni won an initial vote of confidence in the lower house of parliament on Tuesday after laying out a limited programme for his new government.

Newly appointed Italian Prime Minister Paolo Gentiloni (R) is congratulated by Foreign Minister Angelino Alfano at the end of a speech before a confidence vote at the parliament in Rome, Italy, December 13, 2016.Alessandro Bianchi

The former foreign minister was asked by the president to form an administration after Matteo Renzi resigned as premier last week following his heavy defeat in a referendum on constitutional reform.

To take office, Gentiloni needs to win votes of confidence in both houses of parliament and easily won the first in the chamber of deputies by 368 to 105, with many opposition parliamentarians not taking part in the ballot in protest.

Gentiloni faces a sterner test in the upper house Senate on Wednesday, where his majority is likely to be much smaller following a decision by a former Renzi ally not to support the new administration.

Reporting by Crispian Balmer; editing by Gavin Jones

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