Enrico Letta, the leader of Italy's centre-left Democratic Party (PD), plans to step down after defeat in the national election, he said on Monday.

Letta told a news conference that he would stay on for the time being but not stand for the leadership at the next party congress which will be held in the near future.

He described the election victory for a right-wing alliance led by Giorgia Meloni as a "sad day for Italy and Europe". (Reporting by Angelo Amante Writing by Keith Weir Editing by Agnieszka Flak)