The head of the Anglican Church Queen Elizabeth II met Pope Francis on Thursday for the first time during a one-day visit to the Italian capital, Rome. The meeting in the Vatican was described as a private one and pomp and protocol were kept to a minimum. Earlier, the Queen and Prince Philip had lunch with the Italian President, Giorgio Napolitano, and his wife Clio at the Quirinal Palace.
Italian Prime Minister-designate Matteo Renzi said he expected his new government to be in place in time for a formal vote of confidence in parliament on Monday, after he wrapped up consultations with the main political parties.
Italian President Giorgio Napolitano summoned Matteo Renzi to a meeting on Monday at which he is expected to ask the centre-left leader to form a government that must overhaul one of the most troubled economies in the Euro zone.
The leader of Italy's anti-establishment 5-Star Movement, Beppe Grillo, criticised the re-election of President Giorgio Napolitano as a desperate attempt to retain power by a discredited establishment.
Italian President Giorgio Napolitano ruled out standing down early to make way for new parliamentary elections, following the failure of attempts to form a government this week. He stressed that Prime Minister Mario Monti retained full authority at the head of a caretaker administration until a new government can be formed
The head of Italy's centre-left bloc has hit an impasse in his efforts to form a government and said only a mentally ill person would want to govern Italy now. Pier Luigi Bersani was rebuffed by the anti-establishment Five Star Movement on Wednesday.
Italy's anti-establishment Five Star Movement has officially asked President Giorgio Napolitano for a mandate to form a new government. The party led by comedian Beppe Grillo won an unexpected 25% of the vote in elections last month and holds the balance of power.
Italian President Giorgio Napolitano appealed to political leaders to work together to form a government, but his appeal fell on deaf ears and pressure grew for a new poll after last month's deadlocked election. The situation is dominated by the ‘Grilusconi’ phenomenon which mustered a 55% protest vote.
Mario Monti formed a new technocrat government in Italy Wednesday to tackle a major debt crisis threatening the entire Euro zone and said he hoped it would placate financial markets.
Italy's Prime Minister-designate Mario Monti said on Monday his first day of talks for a new government were constructive and he hoped to form an administration that could take the country through to the next scheduled elections in 2013.