Italy is headed towards a hung parliament Monday, following an election that saw voters shun mainstream politics and opt for anti-establishment parties.
As the official vote count continued on Monday morning, after the ballot on Sunday, it showed the Five Star Movement (M5S) would be the largest single party, but a center-right bloc — which features the anti-immigration Lega party — would gain the most seats.
With three-quarters of the vote counted, as of 9:00 a.m. local time, the early results showed that no one party or bloc would have a majority of votes enabling it to govern alone. This signals a potentially long, drawn-out and likely fractious negotiation process in order to form a government.
Government vote data on Monday morning showed the center-right alliance with around 37 percent of the vote and anti-establishment M5S with 32 percent of the vote. The center-left bloc, including the ruling Democratic Party (PD) which took a drubbing in the vote, was seen with 23 percent of the vote.
Italian media news agency ANSA reported that former Prime Minister and PD party leader Matteo Renzi had resigned on Monday morning, although a PD party spokesperson said the party had had no notification yet.