's former PM Renzi breaks away from ruling PD, claims loyalty to government-press

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MILAN, Sept 17 (Reuters) - Former Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi said he would break away form the ruling Democratic Party (PD) as he sought to set up a new centrist force in the country, but claimed his move would not weaken the new government led by Giuseppe Conte.

The parliamentary groups of the new force would be created this week, Renzi said in an interview with daily newspaper la Repubblica published on Tuesday.

"That will be good for everyone," he said, adding it would allow the government "to probably expand its parliamentary support".

Renzi, who led a centre-left administration from 2014-2016, is now a member of Senate for PD.

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He was instrumental in piecing together a new ruling coalition in earlier this month after the far-right League party walked out of its previous alliance with 5-Star in the hope of triggering an early election. (Reporting by Giulio Piovaccari; Editing by Sam Holmes)

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