Grillo expels five more M5S Senators
Others considering leaving party caucus, sources say06 March, 15:09
The incident brought tensions within Italy's second-biggest political force to a head amid accusations of hypocrisy on Grillo's part.
The latest expulsions were greeted by sarcasm from across the political spectrum.
"Last one out, close the door. In the end only he (Grillo) and (M5S co-fonder) Casaleggio will be left," wrote Democratic Party (PD) Senator Mario Morgoni in a tweet. "Beppe Grillo in North Korean sauce. By expelling five M5S Senators perhaps he is aiming to run as successor to Kim Jong-un," echoed party colleague Francesco Scalia. Elvira Savino of ex-premier Silvio Berlusconi's opposition party Forza Italia criticised Grillo for playing into the hands of the PD.
"He continues to expel parliamentarians who will inexorably end up in the arms of Renzi and (Giuseppe) Civati,", leader of a dissident group within the PD, she said. Meanwhile five more M5S Senators were considering leaving the party caucus following the latest ouster according to media reports.