The newly appointed Italian prime minister rings the bell during his first Cabinet meeting at Chigi Palace in Rome, Italy. REUTERS/Remo Casilli
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Italy's president swore in Western Europe's first populist government Friday, featuring a mix of anti-establishment and right-wing ministers who have promised an "Italy first" agenda that has alarmed Europe's political establishment. The continent's euroskeptic politicians cheered the birth of the new government coalition of the Five Star Movement (M5S) and the right-wing League party. Conte's deputy premiers are his two more seasoned political masters: M5S leader Luigi Di Maio and Matteo Salvini, head of the League.Nigel Farage, former leader of Britain's UKIP party that played a key role in the Brexit campaign for Britain to leave the EU, wished good luck to the two Italian parties.European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker told a conference Thursday that he loved Italy, but refused to accept the frequent pass-the-blame mantra by Italian politicians that Italy's ills are the fault of the EU.
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