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ROME, February 24 (Itar-Tass) – Parliamentary elections began in Italy. A new government of the country will be formed on the election results. The polling stations opened at 08:00 local time (11:00 Moscow time) throughout the country and will work until 22:00 local time (01:00 Moscow time on Monday).
The second stage of the elections will be held on Monday from 07:00 local time (10:00 Moscow time) until 15:00 local time (18:00 Moscow time), after that the vote count will begin.
Early elections are held in the Italian Legislative Assembly and a little bit earlier than the expiry of the term of the previous parliament over a crisis of the technical Cabinet, which came to power in November 2011 after Silvio Berlusconi’s resignation.
At ongoing elections the former prime minister will head again the right-centrist coalition made of his party People of Freedom and old allies from the League of the North, as well as several small right-centrist unions. Berlusconi stated repeatedly that in case of victory of this bloc, he will not claim for the post of the chairman of the Council of Ministers, just taking the post of the minister of finance and economic development.
His main rivals – the left-centrist Democratic Party is headed by Pier Luigi Bersani, who was nominated as a candidate for prime minister from the party. The centrists will take away some part of votes from the leftists and rightists. The positions of the centrists were substantially built up by former technical Italian prime minister Mario Monti, who has collected the pre-election list Civil Choice, which nominated him as a candidate for premiership.
The main intrigue of the Italian parliamentary elections is what percentage will gain the Five Star Movement headed by popular Italian comedian Beppe Grillo. Formed a year ago amid the apathy and disappointment of the Italians in current politicians, this union gained high popularity among all layers of population. The observers do not rule out that the Five Star Movement, which promises a revolution in the Italian politics stained with corruption and scandals, can become one of the leading forces in a new parliament. Bersani, Monti and Berlusconi come out against Grillo, naming him as a dangerous social phenomenon threatening to stability in the governance of the country.