March 5 - Italians fear consequences of political stalemate after last week's general election, in which comedian Beppe Grillo's 5-Star Movement won a huge protest vote, left no group with a working majority in parliament, though Europe may not have to worry just yet. Joel Flynn reports
It's a critical time for Italy. The Catholic Church and the country's politicians are negotiating behind closed doors to find a new leader. But the Vatican City doesn't have the markets to worry about. Italy's president - who does - is reportedly considering appointing a technocratic government again, after inconclusive elections. SOUNDBITE: Rome resident, Vittorio Coltellacci, saying (Italian): "Each one of them is right in some way and wrong in others and that is why the situation is unsolvable." SOUNDBITE: Unnamed Rome resident, saying (Italian): "The best thing would be for them to work together and form a government for the unity of the nation." 5-Star Movement leader Beppe Grillo currently holds the whip hand after winning a huge protest vote He told Italian media he would not support a technical administration. The political stalemate has caused alarm in Europe. There are fears the instability could reignite the debt crisis which brought Mario Monti - the current technocrat leader - into power in 2011. But Edward Hadas of Reuters Breakingviews says he's not worried. SOUNDBITE: Reuters Breakingviews Economics Editor, Edward Hadas, saying (English): "The only thing that could really derail this project now that the ECB and the Germans have come and had of it is a government in Italy that wilfully moves away from Europe, and really we don't see any sign of that yet." The idea of another technocrat government may no impress all Italians. Only one in ten voters endorsed the last one by voting for Monti.