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Matteo Renzi resigns as Italy's premier but asked to stay on in caretaker role

Matteo Renzi resigns as Italy's premier but asked to stay on in caretaker role
Italian Premier Matteo Renzi, center, arrives at the Quirinal presidential palace in Rome on Wednesday. (Alessandra Tarantino / Associated Press)

Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi has resigned after a humiliating defeat on his reforms agenda that was central to his nearly three-year government.

President Sergio Mattarella asked Renzi on Wednesday evening to stay on in a caretaker role until a new government can be put in place.

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A presidential aide, Ugo Zampetti, told reporters that Mattarella will start consultations late Thursday with various party leaders to see where support lies for a new government.

Renzi tried to resign on Monday, but Mattarella told him to stay on until Parliament gave final approval to the 2017 national budget legislation.

The Senate approved the budget earlier Wednesday.

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