Berlusconi backs government in confidence motion

Silvio Berlusconi has announced to the Senate that his PDL party will back the government in its vote of confidence. The support the PDL guarantees that the government will win today's vote and that there will not be a fresh wave of elections. The move is dramatic U-turn from Berlusconi's party which withdrew five ministers from the coalition government.

Speaking in support of the government Berlusconi told the Senate that "Italy needs a government that can carry out structural and institutional reforms that the country needs in order to modernise".

An earlier vote count from Berlusconi's PDL party as reported by minister of interior, deputy chairman of the board and political secretary of the PDL Angelino Alfano. 32 were expected to vote no, with 25 voting yes and 24 saying they will leave the Senate.

Mario Monti spoke in the Italian senate debate urging senators to prevent Italy from falling into the "colonial" oversight of the Troika.