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Italian Deputy Prime Minister Luigi Di Maio speaks to reporters after unveiling a new budget proposal. Photo: Antonio Masiello via Getty Images

Italy's populist government unveiled a draft budget Friday that includes tax cuts and a guaranteed "citizens income" for the poor, raising its annual budget deficit to 2.4% of its GDP and renewing fears in the European Union of a Greece-like debt crisis, reports the Financial Times.

The big picture: The budget must be approved by the European Commission, which asks all EU member states to bring down their overall debt to 60% of GDP. Italy's debt, which is second in Europe only to Greece, currently sits at 130% and is expected to rise. A budget veto by the Commission could spark a political fight ahead of next year's European Parliament elections, which are already expected to pit the center-right establishment and against surging right-wing populists.

Go deeper

23 mins ago - World

U.N. envoy resumes push for cease fire in Gaza

Tor Wennesland. Photo by KHALIL MAZRAAWI/AFP via Getty Images

Tor Wennesland, U.N. Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process , has been holding extensive talks with both Israel and Hamas over the past 24 hours in an effort to restore peace, a diplomatic source tells Axios.

Driving the news: The source said Wennesland spoke on Sunday to Israel’s National Security Adviser Meir Ben-Shabbat and other senior Israeli security officials as well as Hamas officials and Egyptian intelligence officials.

3 hours ago - Health

CDC director says politics didn't play a role in abrupt mask policy shift

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Director Rochelle Walensky told Fox News Sunday that political pressure had nothing to do with the agency's sudden announcement that fully vaccinated Americans can go without masks in most indoor settings.

Why it matters: Emerging evidence shows vaccinated people are less likely to transmit the virus, as COVID-19 cases and deaths drop. But the responsibility to uphold the abrupt policy change falls to individuals and businesses.