Monti to lead Italy's centrist coalition


Outgoing Italian prime minister Mario Monti said yesterday he would lead a coalition of centrist parties who support his European and reform-minded agenda in the parliamentary election in two months’ time.

The announcement clarifies Monti’s involvement in the vote, after he said on Sunday that he may be willing to seek a second term if a credible political force backed his reform agenda.

“The traditional left-right split has historic and symbolic value” for the country, but “it does not highlight the real alliance that Italy needs – one that focuses on Europe and reforms,” Monti said after a meeting with centrist politicians. He added that he was willing to accept “being named as leader of the coalition”. – (Reuters)