Italian lower house approves new government
April 30, 2013 -- Updated 1005 GMT (1805 HKT)
- NEW: In a confidence vote, Italy's lower house confirms the new prime minister's government
- Enrico Letta was sworn in Sunday, the same day a gunman shot officers outside his office
- Letta has said unemployment and political reform are top priorities
- Italy has an 11.6% unemployment rate
Rome (CNN) -- After months of political uncertainty and economic crisis, the lower house of Italy's parliament gave Prime Minister Enrico Letta's new government a vote confidence on Monday.
Letta received support from lawmakers in a 453-153 lower house vote. Lawmakers in the upper house, the Senate, are scheduled to vote on Tuesday.
Letta was sworn in on Sunday -- the same day a gunman shot and wounded two national police officers outside the prime minister's office.
But Letta was being sworn in at the presidential palace a short distance away and was not present at the time of the shooting, state-run news agency ANSA said.
Gunman opens fire in Italy
Italy has been hampered by political uncertainty since February, when elections left none of the candidates with enough support to form a government.
Letta, a center-left politician, has 18 ministers -- two of whom are members of the center-right People of Freedom Party led by three-time Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi.
Nearly all the others are members of Letta's Democratic Party or people close to it.
Letta said last week that the most important priority is tackling the country's 11.6% unemployment rate, which has pushed many young Italians to leave the country.
The second most pressing issue facing Italy is the need for political reform, he said.
Constitutional changes are needed to reduce the number of members of parliament and fix an electoral system that has kept the country locked in a political stalemate it can't afford, he said.
"We need to do this together with the largest participation possible," he said.
He also said the European Union's policy of austerity needs to change.
Part of complete coverage on
Syrian refugees fleeing into Lebanon tell CNN's Nick Paton Walsh how they stepped over dead bodies in their flight -- and now face the a biting winter.
December 11, 2013 -- Updated 1629 GMT (0029 HKT)
It looked plausible to most, but to deaf people watching the Mandela memorial -- it was all nonsense. The interpreter has been dubbed "a fake."
December 11, 2013 -- Updated 1524 GMT (2324 HKT)
Pope Francis is Time's person of the year. His papacy has drawn adulation from people around the world for his man-of-the-people ways.
December 11, 2013 -- Updated 0541 GMT (1341 HKT)
They hoped for playful weekend outing in the snow. The moments of adventure dissolved into a fight for survival for the family of six.
December 12, 2013 -- Updated 1023 GMT (1823 HKT)
Yahoo's teen star Nick D'Aloisio sells the new digital future -- with vanishing content.
December 11, 2013 -- Updated 1328 GMT (2128 HKT)
Denmark's PM Helle Thorning-Schmidt made headlines when she snapped a selfie with PM David Cameron and President Barack Obama.
December 11, 2013 -- Updated 1311 GMT (2111 HKT)
Mars kits, a triple nipple baby bottle and extinct animal DNA are just some of things you'd find inside the "99¢ Store of the Future."
December 11, 2013 -- Updated 0958 GMT (1758 HKT)
They say necessity is the mother of invention. Here are 11 of the most mind-boggling inventions ever submitted to the U.S. patent office.
December 11, 2013 -- Updated 0242 GMT (1042 HKT)
Uruguay is set to become the first country in the world to have a system regulating legal production, sale and consumption of the drug.
December 9, 2013 -- Updated 2311 GMT (0711 HKT)
Until he returned home this weekend, Merrill Newman -- an American held in North Korea -- had no idea what a story he'd become.
December 11, 2013 -- Updated 1756 GMT (0156 HKT)
Browse through images you don't always see in news reports, taken by CNN teams all around the world.
He was imprisoned for life but that did not quiet him. Nelson Mandela became South Africa's first black president, and an icon and inspiration.
Today's five most popular stories