Italian PM Wins Initial Vote of Confidence in Lower House of Parliament

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 program for his new government.

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. He 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.