The Italian parliament re-elected 87-year-old President Giorgio Napolitano to serve a second term in an attempt to resolve the political stalemate left by February's inconclusive election.
Italy's president launched urgent talks that could lead to the naming of a prime minister after two months of post-election stalemate that has weighed on a stagnant economy and alarmed Rome's partners in the euro zone.
Italy's president Giorgio Napolitano is set to announce on Wednesday his choice of prime minister to form a new government and pull the euro zone's third largest economy out of a two-month political rut.
Italian President Giorgio Napolitano refused to sign a key government decree to increase the taxation powers of local authorities, dealing a blow to embattled Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi.
Prime Minister designate Mario Monti will meet Italy's president on Wednesday to present a new government to face a crisis that has brought Italy to the brink of economic disaster and endangered the entire euro zone.
Italy's head of state dissolved parliament and opened the way to a February election, with doubts growing over whether outgoing Prime Minister Mario Monti will participate in what promises to be a bitter campaign.