Tuesday 29 November 2022

Rodrigo Chaves congratulated Italy’s newly elected president

Giorgia Meloni, Italy's far-right wins the election and vows to govern for all

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QCOSTARICA – Costa Rica President, Rodrigo Chaves, congratulated Giorgia Meloni, the leader of the Fratelli d’Italia (FdI) – Brothers of Italy party, who becomes the next and first female president of Italy, after the results of Sunday’s voting.

Giorgia Meloni has been intent on coming across as a moderate candidate

Chaves commented that “the Government of Costa Rica expresses its sincere congratulations to the Italian people for the electoral process last Sunday, September 25.”

“Congratulations to Mrs. Giorgia Meloni for the success of her FDI political party in the election,” said the president.

Who is Giorgia Meloni, the star of the far right?

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With the populist slogan “Italy and Italians first!” Meloni has called for low taxes and a halt to immigration. Critics warn she is flirting with Italy’s fascist history.

Born in 1977, Meloni joined the youth wing of the neofascist Italian Social Movement party when she was 15 to take a stand against the far-left terror that plagued Italy during that era. She later led the student branch of the far-right National Alliance, was elected to the Italian Parliament’s Chamber of Deputies in 2006 and became Italy’s youngest minister two years later.

At the age of 31, she took over the youth portfolio in Berlusconi’s government. Ten years ago, Meloni co-founded the FdI, which she has led since 2014. In 2020, she also took over the chairmanship of the EuropeanConservatives and Reformists party, which includes, among others, the Polish ruling party, PiS.

Meloni has been telling party members to drop the Roman salute

In a Vox electoral act in Marbella, she pointed out that “there are no possible mediations, it is said yes or no. Yes to the natural family, no to the LGBT lobby; yes to sexual identity, no to gender ideology; yes to the culture of life, no to the abyss of death; yes to the universality of the cross, no to Islamic violence; yes to secure borders, no to mass immigration.”

Meloni has had to clarify issues such as her vision of the former fascist leader Benito Mussolini.

“The Italian right has relegated fascism to history for decades, unambiguously condemning the deprivation of democracy and the infamous anti-Jewish laws. And obviously, our condemnation of Nazism and communism is also unequivocal,” she said.

Pure Populism

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Meloni headed into the election campaign with the populist slogan “Italy and Italian people first!” She has called for more family-friendly benefits, less European bureaucracy, low taxes and a halt to immigration.

The party logo of the Brothers of Italy is unmistakable

She wants to renegotiate EU treaties, and her party rejects abortions and same-sex marriage. In terms of economic and foreign policy, the trained foreign language secretary is relatively inexperienced. She has spent most of her political career as a member of parliament and a party official.

Meloni has kept her cool amid harsh criticism from the left-wing political camp. Ginevra Bompiani, a writer, told La7 television that “Meloni is a real jerk…. she is surrounded by Nazis.” To which Meloni replied on Facebook that she was tired of being portrayed as “the black lady.”

Her opponents, she said, are only desperate because she is so successful. Associating her with Mussolini, Hitler or Putin is ridiculous, she said. “After all, I support Ukraine.”

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In a TV interview, she once told her critics to take a look at France and Germany, where far-right populist parties have been successful and no one turned that into a scandal. “Why should it be any different in Italy?” The German party Meloni referred to is the Alternative for Germany (AfD), which lost votes in the 2021 federal election and hovered at just over 10% of the vote.

Giorgia Meloni is on course to become the country’s first female prime minister

Meloni is counting on Italian leadership to transform the EU into a loose economic union. French President Emmanuel Macron has been weakened by losing his majority in parliament, she said. And in a recent interview with Italian public broadcaster RAI, she accused German Chancellor Olaf Scholz of lacking confidence, adding that Scholz certainly does not have the same strength as his predecessor, Angela Merkel.

“That is precisely where she would come in,” said Meloni.

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