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“Right-wing noise in Rome”: How the German press saw the election result in Italy

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The elections in Italy and the victory of the alliance of the Brothers of Italy, the League of the North and Forza Italia preoccupy the German media, which point out, among other things, the concern in European capitals about the positions of the head of the Brotherhood and Prime Minister-designate Georgia Meloni on Europe.

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“The radical right wins the elections”, Der Spiegel magazine summarizes, pointing to historically low voter turnout in elections. “Many in Europe watched with concern a possible victory of the Brothers of Italy (…). The party has adopted nationalist, EU-critical and partly racist positions and its symbols are reminiscent of Mussolini,” the magazine explains.

“Right wing noise in Rome” is the headline of the newspaper Bild, which notes among other things that “for the first time since the end of the Second World War, Italy gets a right-wing nationalist government”, as well as that Giorgia Meloni will become the country’s first female prime minister. “Many in Brussels and other European capitals are worried about a government with the Brothers of Italy and Meloni at the helm. The Brotherhood is the successor form of a fascist party and Meloni, according to her political opponents, never distanced herself from Mussolini’s fascism,” the report underlines, adding that the leader of the Brotherhood Italy prioritizes Italy’s relationship with the US, not the EU.

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The Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung focuses on the low turnout of Italians in the elections: “The abstention party has emerged as a stronger political force,” it explains, noting that turnout has fallen by 10 percentage points since 2018, with abstention reaching 35%, but without to appear that one of the parties was favored.

The Süddeutsche Zeitung in its commentary notes that “Europe needs Italy and even more Italy needs Europe”, judging that “even with the victory of the noisy and extreme right, nothing will change — fortunately —.”

The newspaper Die Welt, for its part, recalls that Ms. Meloni singled out Germany as her “favorite enemy” in her autobiography and estimates that there will be an escalation of verbal attacks against Berlin. “Meloni will try to present the Germans as the bogeymen of Europe and the danger is that her criticism will find fertile ground, not only in her home country, but also in countries like Poland, Greece or France”, the newspaper writes. During the election campaign, the leader of the “Brothers” claimed that Germany is richer than other countries and can afford higher gas prices, even profiting from the problems of its partners, while saying that German companies have particularly favorable contracts with Gazprom and pay a third of what the Italian companies pay. However, she did not provide any evidence for these allegations when asked.

The dominance of the right-wing coalition in Italy was nevertheless welcomed by the Alternative for Germany (AfD), with MP Beatrix von Storch writing on Twitter: “We celebrate with Italy. Sweden in the North, Italy in the South — left-wing governments are a thing of the past”.

On the other hand, according to the Athens News Agency, in an interview with Welt, the vice-president of the European Parliament and former Minister of Justice, Katarina Barley, expresses concern about the outcome of the elections and says that Mrs. Meloni’s political role model is Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban and former US President Donald Trump. Mrs. Meloni “is a threat to constructive coexistence in Europe, as in her person the authoritarians acquire a lobbyist to bury the work of the EU,” adds the German politician of the Social Democrats.

Source: News Beast

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