Shortly after the final Brexit referendum result was announced, first the Freedom Party in The Netherlands and then Front National in France quickly declared they would proceed with demanding referenda on E U membership in their own nations. These were quickly followed by the head of Italy’s Northern League who saidaid “Now it’s our turn.’
Dow Jones reports, Italy’s anti-immigrant and eurosceptic Liga Nord (Northern League) will start a petition calling for a law that allows a referendum on whether the country wants to exit the European Union. In a news conference following the announcement of the U.K.’s decision to leave the EU, Northern League’s head Matteo Salvini said that in the wake of Britain voting to leave the EU it was time to give Italians a vote on their EU membership.
“This vote was a slap in the face for all those who say that Europe is their own business and Italians don’t have to meddle with that,” Mr. Salvini said.
The Northern League previously launched a campaign against the euro in 2014, but it has been since overshadowed politically by the anti-immigrant campaigns on which it has built up its electoral support.
Virginia Raggi: Five Star movement’s winner in Rome mayoral election
Northern League is not the only Eurosceptic political party in Italy: as we reported earlier this week, the anti-establishment 5 Star Movement, emboldened by dramatic victories in Italy’s recent mayoral elections in which 37-year old lawyer Virginia Raggi (above), was elected Rome’s first female mayor by winning a stunning 67% of the vote in the second round, resurrected their plans for a referendum on leaving the euro.
Such a campaign may be moot: the Italian constitution does not allow for the repudiation of international agreements through a referendum.
However, even a symbolic vote to quit the EU and eurozone would bring pressure to bear on the deeply unpopular Italian government, led by Matteo Renzi.
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