Coalition govt formed in Italy
Rome (Agencies): Italy's Prime Minister Enrico Letta on Sunday unveiled a new coalition government, finally breaking a two-month stalemate in the...
Rome (Agencies): Italy's Prime Minister Enrico Letta on Sunday unveiled a new coalition government, finally breaking a two-month stalemate in the recession-hit country which had tested the patience of European partners with a motley team including Silvio Berlusconi's protege. Centre-left moderate Enrico Letta named as his deputy Angelino Alfano� a move aimed at appeasing the right but which angered critics of billionaire tycoon Berlusconi, who they claim will have the reins of power in his grasp. Fabrizio Saccomanni, a director at Italy's central bank, was handed the post of Finance and Economy Minister, tasked with dragging the eurozone's third-largest economy from its worst recession in 20 years under the watchful gaze of concerned international partners. Emma Bonino, a former European commissioner and rights campaigner, will be the new Foreign Minister in a new government with a 'strong female element', noted Letta. Alfano will also hold the post of Interior Minister while his predecessor in that job, Anna Maria Cancellieri, will run the Justice Ministry. The new cabinet is expected to be officially sworn in on Monday and Letta has said he wants to move quickly to tackle the social fallout of the recession by tackling unemployment and moving away from austerity imposed by his predecessor Mario Monti. Correspondents say the "grand coalition" between Italy's current main right- and left-wing parties is unprecedented, and will probably prove an uneasy alliance. Berlusconi will not be a minister but had pushed for leading figures from his party to be given top posts. Angelino Alfano, the PDL's secretary and one of Mr Berlusconi's closest political allies, is deputy prime minister and interior minister in the new government. Among the other key appointments are Bank of Italy director general Fabrizio Saccomanni to head the powerful economy ministry. The cabinet is to have more women than usual, including former European Commissioner Emma Bonino as foreign minister. Cops shot outside premier office Reports say two paramilitary police officers were shot and wounded outside the Italian premier's office as the new leader was sworn in about a kilometre away. The Italian news agency ANSA said the assailant, described in reports as a man dressed in a suit and tie, had been detained by police.