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EU Parliament elects Italian socialist as its new president

EU Parliament elects Italian socialist as its new president

The European Parliament elected Italian socialist lawmaker David Sassoli on Wednesday as its speaker for the next 2-1/2 years.

Sassoli, 63, was elected after two rounds of votes by lawmakers at the first plenary session of the assembly which emerged from EU elections in May. A former journalist from Florence, Sassoli has been a lawmaker in the EU parliament for a decade.

EU member governments’ surprise nominee for president of the EU's executive, Germany’s Ursula Von der Leyen, who is seeking support in the EU parliament on Wednesday, can rely on the support of the main center-right and liberal groupings.

The election of center-left lawmaker Sassoli as the president of the parliament might persuade some socialists to back her, Reuters said.