The Italian Foreign Minister, Luigi Di Maioabandoned the Five Star Movement (M5S) that had brought him to power, as he himself announced on Tuesday night. Y founded a new party taking, at least so far, 62 parliamentarians, 51 deputies and 11 senators, all from the M5S. Some media speak instead of a total of 70 parliamentarians but the figures are all provisional for now.
In this way ili”>the M5S loses the parliamentary majority it had achieved in the 2018 elections. According to the Italian agency AdnKronos, two of the seven representatives that the Movement has in the European Parliament have also joined Di Maio’s group. Among the M5S militants who joined the new party are the Deputy Minister of Economy, Laura Castelli, four undersecretaries from different ministries and four presidents of parliamentary commissions. The new party is called “Insieme per il futuro” (Together for the future)
The announcement of the creation of this new party, less than 24 hours after the latest internal controversies broke out in the Movement over the proposal that Italy would make to Europe to send new weapons to Ukraine, perplexed many but indicates that the Internal disputes, although they were not too public, had already existed for a long time.
Regarding the new arms shipment denied by the M5S and for which he harshly criticized the chancellor, Di Maio wrote in a note: “As Foreign Minister I have reiterated and will continue to reiterate that Italy cannot afford to take positions contrary to Euro-Atlantic values. . Values of democracy, freedom, respect for people and defense of States” (…) “We all seek and want peace. Meanwhile, Putin continues to bomb Ukraine, ignoring the request of the international community to sit down for negotiations.” And in such a scenario, Di Maio also said, “the leaders of the first political force in Parliament (the M5S) decide to attack the Foreign Minister and carry out positions that put the Italian government in difficulty at the headquarters of the EU. An immature attitude that tends to create tensions and instability in the government. A very serious event.”
Before announcing his decision publicly on Tuesday night, Di Maio went to the Quirinale Palace to inform the President of the Republic, Sergio Mattarella. He later held a press conference in a hotel in the center of Rome in which he, however, did not answer the journalists’ questions. “Thanks to the Movement for everything it has done for me,” Di Maio began by saying at the press conference. And he continued: “I am leaving the Movement. It is a very hard decision that I had to make. I never would have thought I could do it before. But today a new journey begins. And about the new party, he added: “A political force will be born that will not be personal, where there will be no room for hatred, sovereignism and populism (…) Starting tomorrow, the Movement will no longer be the first political force in Parliament,” he concluded.
“We had to choose which part of history to be on,” said Di Maio, also speaking of the war in Ukraine and the division of the M5S. The leaders of the Movement have risked weakening the country and putting the government in difficulty for reasons linked to the crisis of consensus itself” (NDR: which was greatly diminished in the recent municipal elections).
For their part, leaders of the M5S, especially former Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte, denied at all times that their intention had been to put the government or Draghi himself in difficulties, and ruled out that the M5S would disappear after this division. What will actually happen with the M5S can only be seen later.
New weapons to Ukraine
Meanwhile, the Italian Chamber of Deputies – after the Senate did the same yesterday – approved Prime Minister Mario Draghi’s proposal to send new weapons to Ukraine and apply new sanctions against Russia, among other things. Proposal to be presented at the European Council that will meet on June 23 and 24 in Brussels to decide on new measures regarding Ukraine. The Italian proposal also includes support for Ukraine’s candidacy to join the European Union and for UN intervention to unblock the ports and avoid an unprecedented food crisis.
“The Italian government will continue to support Ukraine as this Parliament has instructed us to do,” Draghi said. speaking in the Senate where, before the speech also, to those who asked him if he was worried about what was happening in the M5S that could destabilize his government, he said no.
“The sanctions against Russia they are working – he also said – . The International Monetary Fund predicts that these sanctions could cost Russia 8.5% of its GDP (Gross Domestic Product). Time has shown that these measures are always effective. But our channels of dialogue remain open. We will not stop seeking peace on the terms Ukraine chooses” (…) “Ukraine must defend itself. Sanctions and arms shipments serve that purpose,” he added. And to the parliamentarians who asked him why not design a peace plan, Draghi said that “in order to design a peace plan, both parties are needed. On the other hand, one of them is still looking for war while the other says that the Russians must go and only then will they start talking. They are two irreconcilable positions.