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Italy could be next country to leave EU after populist parties gain power

Italy could be next country to leave EU after populist parties gain power

Italy’s leaders from Five Star and League are closing in on forming a populist government together, the 58-page joint policy document calls for a renegotiation of the Dublin refugee treaty, increasing tax cuts, withdrawing the sanctions against Russia, and even to leave the EU, Financial Times reported.

In Italy, the first time Eurosceptic forces will run one of the eurozone’s largest economies and a watershed moment for the EU. On Friday, Salvini and the Five Star leader, Luigi di Maio, unveiled a joint policy document containing plans to strengthen the economy and foreign policy. The far-right leaders also propose to build more detention centres to accelerate the deportation of an estimated 500,000 illegal immigrants and review migrant rescue missions at sea after they arrive on Italy’s shores.

In a Facebook video last week, Salvini told supporters he would rid the country of “delinquents” and dismantle the previous administration’s “€50bn [£44bn] migration reception” policy. In fact, immigration has become a true problem for Italy over the past 20 years because of previous governments’ failure to manage it. The new government should manage immigration and be more responsible instead of creating more fear in our society.

The Five Star and League parties also reject EU austerity measures and are aiming to increase public spending and renegotiate the country’s debt, which is currently the second largest in the EU behind Greece. The new government announced:

“We will target a programme of public debt reduction. Not through revenue based on taxes and austerity – policies that have not achieved their goal – but through increased GDP by reviving demand.”

Additionally, the populist parties offer t refocus Italy’s attention on the southern front and intensification of co-operation with countries fighting terrorism.

The agreement between the two leaders ends months of political uncertainty in Italy, which was sparked by the country’s general election in March.

Commenting on the negotiations, Mr Di Maio said:

“We’ve finally concluded the Contract for the Government of Change. I’m very happy.”

If coalition negotiations had failed, both Mr Di Maio and Mr Salvini had previously called for fresh snap elections to take place, which would have offered Italy’s controversial former Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi another chance of re-entering government.