Rome-Italians began voting on Sunday in elections expected to lead the country’s first government led by the far right since World War II, bringing Eurosceptic populists to the heart of Europe.
Brothers of Italy Party, Led by former Mussolini supporter Giorgia Meloni He is leading the polls and looks set to take office in an alliance with the Far Right and Silvio Berlusconi’s Forza Italia political party.
The 45-year-old Meloni, who campaigned under the motto “God, country and family”, hopes to become Italy’s first female prime minister.
Voting opens at 0500 GMT (1pm Singapore time) and closes at 2100 GMT (5am Singapore time on Sunday).
An AFP correspondent saw voters lining up at polling stations even before the polls opened in the morning.
Many voters are expected to pick Meloni as “a novelty, the only leader the Italians have not yet challenged”, Teneo consultancy Wolfango Piccoli told AFP. .
Brussels and markets are on the move amid fears that Italy, a founding member of the European Union (EU), may be the latest member to turn right within two weeks after the far-right wins Swedish elections. I am watching carefully.
If she wins, Meloni will face challenges from rampant inflation to an energy crisis as the conflict-related winter in Ukraine approaches.
Italy’s economy, the third largest in the eurozone, has recovered after the pandemic, but have a huge amount of debt Equivalent to 150% of Gross Domestic Product (GDP).
Meloni has campaigned to prove that his party is ready, even though it has never been in power.
Italy’s Brotherhood, which has its roots in the post-fascist movement founded by supporters of dictator Benito Mussolini, won just 4% of the vote in the last election in 2018.
Meloni has softened his views over the years, most notably abandoning calls for Italy to leave the EU’s single currency.
https://www.straitstimes.com/world/europe/far-right-eyes-historic-victory-as-italy-votes Far Right Eyes Historic Victory in Italian Vote