Italy president says will remain in office until mandate ends

ROME - Italian President Giorgio Napolitano said on Saturday he would remain in office until his mandate ends on May 15, ruling out an immediate resignation to allow new elections to be held as soon as possible.

Napolitano told reporters that the failure of political parties to reach agreement on forming a new government after last month's deadlocked elections had shown that his options were limited.

However he added that: "until the final day, I can at least contribute to creating conditions that are more favourable to the aim of unblocking a political situation which has ended up with irreconcilable positions."

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