Italy's Senate has approved a package of key economic reforms designed to fend off bankruptcy as Europe's worsening debt crisis threatens a new, region-wide recession.
The package of reforms includes a sell off of state assets. The plan now goes to the lower house of parliament for final approval on November 12 or November 13.
The final approval of the measures is a precondition set by Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi for his resignation.
Meanwhile, Greece swore in former European Central Bank Vice-President Lucas Papademos as the country's new interim prime minister, replacing George Papandreou.
The country's new unity government, tasked with pushing through tough reforms required for a crucial EU bailout, was also sworn in.
The Greek reforms are a precondition for a 130-billion-euro bailout deal agreed with Greece's international lenders -- including a write off of 50 percent of the country's debts.
compiled from agency reports