February 16, 2018 / 1:07 PM / a month ago

Italy PM says no risk of anti-Europe government after March 4 vote

BERLIN (Reuters) - Italian Prime Minister Paolo Gentiloni said on Friday he expected a stable government to emerge from national elections on March 4, as final opinion polls showed likely deadlock.

Italian Prime Minister Paolo Gentiloni addresses a news conference after talks with German Chancellor Angela Merkel in Berlin, Germany, February 16, 2018. REUTERS/Hannibal Hanschke

Speaking at a joint news conference with German Chancellor Angela Merkel in Berlin, Gentiloni, whose Democratic Party polls a close third place in the most recent surveys, said:

“Italy will have a government, it will have a stable government. I don’t think there is any risk it will have a government dominated by populist and anti-European positions.”

No party or coalition has sufficient support to build a clear parliamentary majority, according to the polls, but an alliance between former premier Silvio Berlusconi and two anti-EU far-right parties has the best chance of governing alone.

“I think the only possible bulwark of a stable and pro-European government is the centre-left coalition led by the PD,” Gentiloni added.

Reporting by Isla Binnie; Editing by Crispian Balmer

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