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April 18, 2014

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Italian pol sets condition to support Renzi

Updated Sunday, Feb. 16, 2014 | 6:37 a.m.

ROME (AP) — The leader of a political party in Italy says he wants promises from Democratic Party leader Matteo Renzi before supporting him as the country's new premier.

Support from center-right leader Angelino Alfano would help Renzi survive confidence votes in Parliament, if Italy's president asks the 39-year-old Florence mayor to try to form a coalition government.

Alfano, who served as interior minister in Premier Enrico Letta's government, which collapsed last week, said Sunday he wants Renzi to identify his agenda's goals.

Renzi has alienated some in his own party by reneging on pledges to become premier only through a general election, not via the back-room maneuvering that doomed Letta.

Alfano claims that his small party, which last year broke away from longtime conservative leader Silvio Berlusconi, will be "decisive" for Renzi.