Premier Letta resigns after back-room mutiny

In this photo released by the Quirinale press office, Italian Premier Enrico Letta leaves the Quirinale presidential palace in Rome, Friday, Feb. 14, 2014. Premier Enrico Letta drove himself to the Italian president's palace to resign Friday after he was sacked by his own party in a back-room mutiny to catapult the dynamic young mayor of Florence to the helm of the Italian government. In a tweet Friday, Letta said he was resigning and thanked "all those who have helped me." President Giorgio Napolitano is widely expected to accept Letta's resignation and, after a weekend of consultations with political leaders, ask the head of Letta's Democratic Party, Florence Mayor Matteo Renzi, to try to form a government. (AP Photo/Paolo Giandotti, HO)
In this photo released by the Quirinale press office, Italian Premier Enrico Letta leaves the Quirinale presidential palace in Rome, Friday, Feb. 14, 2014. Premier Enrico Letta drove himself to the Italian president's palace to resign Friday after he was sacked by his own party in a back-room mutiny to catapult the dynamic young mayor of Florence to the helm of the Italian government. In a tweet Friday, Letta said he was resigning and thanked "all those who have helped me." President Giorgio Napolitano is widely expected to accept Letta's resignation and, after a weekend of consultations with political leaders, ask the head of Letta's Democratic Party, Florence Mayor Matteo Renzi, to try to form a government. (AP Photo/Paolo Giandotti, HO)

ROME (AP) – Italy’s president has accepted the resignation of Premier Enrico Letta after he was sacked by his own party in a back-room mutiny.

President Giorgio Napolitano said he would start consulting political leaders later Friday with an aim of finding a new government that can win parliamentary approval and enact necessary economic and political reforms.

The consultations are expected to last through Saturday. At their conclusion, Napolitano is widely expected to ask the brash, young mayor of Florence, Matteo Renzi, to try to form a government.

The 39-year-old Renzi engineered the stunning power play to knock Letta out of the premier’s office and move in, accusing Letta of failing to lift Italy out of its economic and political doldrums.

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