Italy's election frontrunner tries to play down concerns

International |  IANS  | Published : Thu, Aug 11, 2022, 11:30 AM

Rome, Aug 11 (IANS) Italian far-right leader Giorgia Meloni, a frontrunner for the September 25 polls, recorded a video message in three languages in a bid to address fears of what an election victory for her Brothers of Italy (Fratelli dItalia) party might mean for the country.

In three speeches in English, French and Spanish on Wednesday, the head of the post-fascist party complained that the international press had portrayed her as a threat to democracy, Italy, Europe and the international community, reports dpa news agency.

"I have been reading that the win of Fratelli d'Italia in the September elections would mean a disaster, leading to an authoritarian turn, Italy's departure from the euro and other nonsense of this sort," she said in the video sent to international journalists.

"None of this is true," Meloni asserted.

According to current polling, Meloni's party enjoys support equivalent to that of the League, headed by far-right populist Matteo Salvini, and Forza Italia (Forward, or Let's Go, Italy) of former Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi, taken together.

The three parties have formed an alliance to contest the polls, while the political forces on the left and in the centre are currently in disarray.

Meloni also accused the left of having brought about the country's social and economic decline over the past 10 years.

As in the past, the party leader avoided clearly distancing herself from fascism, merely saying that fascism is history.

"The Italian right has handed fascism over to history for decades now, unambiguously condemning the suppression of democracy and the ignominious anti-Jewish laws," she added.

The head of the centre-left Democratic Party (PD), Enrico Letta, warned she was trying to appear more moderate.

"Meloni is trying to change her appearance," he pointed out.








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