More than 46 million Italians were eligible to vote from 7am to 11pm, including Italians overseas who already posted ballots.
Despite overseeing a modest economic recovery, the ruling centre-left coalition trailed a distant third on 22%, hit by widespread anger over persistent poverty, high unemployment and an influx of more than 600,000 migrants over the past four years. "There will be queues as well this evening".
While the PD party of former premier Matteo Renzi appeared to be placed second with almost 19 percent of the vote, the poor showing compared with previous elections appeared to signal the end for Renzi himself. Italians are voting under a new law, Rosatellum bis, a parallel voting system, which acts as a mixed system.
She said the central role of Five Star would "cast a shadow on the plans of France's president Emmanuel Macron for further eurozone integration".
Berlusconi himself is unable to become prime minister because a tax fraud conviction bars him from holding public office until next year. Earlier today, we heard from Maio and Salvini neither of which was willing to concede as they felt equally capable of leading the nation. "Democratic Party knocked out, bye to Renzi".
Arsene Wenger insists he is still the best man for Arsenal
Yet right now frustration burns brightly, and Wenger is at the heart of it. This will be an arduous task for the Gunners who face A.C. We don't go into games with our heads down".
Observers noted how the results confirmed the defeat of the two main political forces that have dominated the Italian political landscape for decades - Forza Italia and the Democratic Left. But Di Maio said his party now "feels the responsibility to form a government".
In a stinging defeat for Berlusconi, the anti-immigrant League party headed by Matteo Salvini emerged as the strongest movement within the coalition, taking nearly 18 percent of the vote compared to Berlusconi's 14 percent.
Afterwards, Forza Italia said it was open to welcoming in other parties to create a center-right government, but it was not clear where such support might come from, with the bloc seen some 49 seats short of a majority in the 630-seat lower house.
The poll also showed the PD party had around 21.3 percent of the vote.
International Monetary Fund opposes President Trump's import duty plan on steel, aluminum
It also follows recent United States trade attacks on other major Canadian sectors including forestry and aircraft manufacturing. US President Donald Trump listens to a speaker in the Roosevelt Room of the White House on February 27, 2018 in Washington, DC.
Disillusionment had already made itself felt in a constitutional referendum in 2016 in which southern Italy voted massively against both the proposed reform and then prime minister Matteo Renzi's centre-left government.
Populist parties have made gains in Italy's parliamentary elections, though there was no clear victor, initial reports suggested.
League leader Matteo Salvini, 45, has positioned himself as "a proud populist".
One possibility is for Berlusconi and the PD to form a centrist grand coalition; another - which could spook Italy's European Union partners and financial markets - is a M5S-led administration that potentially could include Berlusconi's far-right party ally, the League. We have great results across the country ... "Centuries of history are at risk of disappearing if Islamisation prevails".
The far-right League, which ran a virulently anti-immigrant, fear-mongering campaign with overtly racist slogans, scored across northern Italy.
Ex-Trump Aide Sam Nunberg Was Unhinged Long Before Today's Meltdown
"For what?" when asked if he would testify after being subpoenaed as part of Mueller's Russian Federation investigation. Then later in the interview, Nunberg seemed to contradict his original refusal to comply with the Mueller investigation.
- Sam Darnold uniquely qualifed to back up Eli Manning with Giants
- U.S. commerce secretary says world leaders call Trump about tariffs
- Eddie Hearn analyses Deontay Wilder's victory over Luis Ortiz
- Crystal Palace 2-3 Manchester United: Red Devils rated and slated
- Politically charged Academy Awards flops - lowest rated ever
- Chicago Teens Meet With Parkland Survivors To Discuss Gun Violence
- Sen. Manchin urges WV Senate to end teacher work stoppage
- Oscars 2018: Nominees hit the red carpet on Hollywood's biggest night
- Shape Of Water wins big at Oscars on activism-fuelled night
- Japanese makeup artist wins Academy Award