Italy’s outgoing Prime Minister, Silvio Berlusconi, has been meeting with his centre-left successor, Romano Prodi, to discuss finding a new head of state, after Carlo Azeglio Ciampi’s resignation. Prodi cannot take office until a new President is elected, something lawmakers will attempt to do on Monday. In an attempt to bridge the gap with the man who for more than three weeks refused to accept defeat in the recent elections, Prodi said he called Berlusconi on Friday to “see if it’s possible to find a way forward together.”
The office of president is largely ceremonial but the country’s top job carries great prestige and some crucial decision making powers. Unless Berlusconi and Prodi can agree quickly, Italy can expect a few more weeks of political uncertainty.