Italy parliament to be led by anti-Mafia, UN officials
AFPROME--Italy's new parliament on Saturday elected a former human rights official and a former anti-Mafia prosecutor as speakers of the lower and upper houses ahead of formal talks on forming a government after inconclusive elections.
March 18, 2013, 12:15 am TWN
Laura Boldrini, who was a spokeswoman in Italy of the United Nations refugee agency, was elected to parliament for the small “Left, Ecology and Freedom” party in a center-left coalition that failed to win an overall majority in elections.
She has also worked for the U.N. food agencies in Rome, the World Food Programme and the Food and Agriculture Organisation, and is well-known as a commentator on human rights issues.
Pietro Grasso headed up Italy's anti-Mafia agency and put hundreds of Mafia members behind bars as a judge before joining parliament this year as a senator for the main center-left Democratic Party.
In their inauguration speeches, both Boldrini and Grasso underlined the dramatic social cost of Italy's ongoing economic crisis.
“This chamber will have to listen to the social suffering of an entire generation,” Boldrini said.