Italy’s Di Maio to step down as leader of 5-star movement – Source

FILE PHOTO: Italian Foreign Minister and 5-Star party leader Luigi Di Maio arrives at a European Union foreign ministers meeting in Brussels, Belgium, January 10, 2020. REUTERS/Johanna Geron

Italy’s Luigi di Maio will step down as leader of the co-ruling 5-Star Movement on Wednesday, a senior 5-Star source said. 

Di Maio, who is also the government’s foreign minister, is expected to meet other ministers belonging to the anti-establishment movement later in the morning and is due to announce his resignation at a party meeting in the afternoon, several dailies reported. 

Di Maio and his spokesman declined to comment. 

The 5-Star obtained 33% of the vote in the 2018 national election but since then its popularity has fallen sharply and latest polls put it around 15%.

Over 30 members of parliament from the 5-Star have left their seats since the beginning of the legislature- some have quit, other have been ousted – underlining the deep divisions within the party.