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Matteo Renzi steps down as prime minister after defeat in crucial Italian referendum


Matteo Renzi, the Italian prime minister, resigned late on Sunday night after losing a constitutional referendum. He conceded before official results were announced as exit polls showed he was heading for a heavy defeat.
"My experience of government finishes here," Mr Renzi told a press conference after the No campaign won what he described as an "extraordinarily clear" victory in the referendum on which he had staked his future.
The risk of political instability in Italy, Europe's fourth largest economy, led to stocks and Euro falling in early trading in Asia.
A senior European Parliament lawmaker from Germany says Italy's reform referendum heralds a period of instability and is a setback for those who want to see reform in Europe.



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