Prime Minister Giulio Andreotti's chances of averting the resignation of his government suffered an apparently fatal setback Tuesday when the Socialist Party said it insisted on a complete change.

Socialist Deputy Prime Minister Claudio Martelli informed Andreotti of the party's decision after President Francesco Cossiga announced that he would accept a Cabinet reshuffle to solve the government crisis if the leader of the ruling coalition agree to it.The 72-year-old Andreotti, who returned Monday from a visit to Paris, New York and Washington, called a meeting for Thursday with his coalition party leaders and appeared confident he could save his 20-month-old government, Italy's 49th since World War II.