Italian Premier Mario Monti takes his seat prior to unveiling his anti-crisis strategy ahead of a confidence vote in his day-old government at the Senate in Rome Thursday

Italian Premier Mario Monti takes his seat prior to unveiling his anti-crisis strategy ahead of a confidence vote in his day-old government at the Senate in Rome Thursday

Italy’s new government passes first confidence vote

Italy’s new technocratic government has won a crucial confidence vote in the Senate to pursue widespread reforms and austerity aimed at staving off the sovereign debt crisis and saving the euro currency.

ROME — Italy’s new technocratic government has won a crucial confidence vote in the Senate to pursue widespread reforms and austerity aimed at staving off the sovereign debt crisis and saving the euro currency.

The Senate voted 281-25 Thursday evening to back the one-day-old government of Mario Monti.

The lower house votes today.

Earlier, Premier Mario Monti appealed to Italians to accept sacrifices to save their country from bankruptcy, but pledged economic growth and greater social cohesion in return.

Monti’s debut address was held against the backdrop of anti-austerity protests, which got violent at times.

Italy’s spiraling financial crisis helped bring down media mogul Silvio Berlusconi’s 3 1/2 year-old government last week, after months of squabbling over how to save Italy from financial ruin.