Italy's 5-Star Movement votes to support Draghi government: official

FILE PHOTO: Former European Central Bank President Mario Draghi arrives for a meeting with Italian President Sergio Mattarella at the Quirinale Palace in Rome, Italy February 3, 2021. REUTERS/Yara Nardi/File Photo

ROME (Reuters) - Members of Italy’s 5-Star Movement voted on Thursday to back Prime Minister designate Mario Draghi, opening the way for the former European Central Bank chief to take office at the head of a broad government of national unity.

In an online ballot, 59.3% of 5-Star supporters heeded a call from party leaders to support the new administration, despite the fact it includes some of their arch foes and will be headed by the sort of technocrat they have previously decried.

After coalition infighting brought down the previous government, President Sergio Mattarella called on Draghi, one of the most respected figures in Italy, to form a new cabinet to tackle the coronavirus health crisis and economic meltdown.

Reporting by Crispian Balmer; Editing by Gavin Jones