When Russian President Vladimir Putin won a fourth term in 2018, some right-wing leaders in Italy were quick to convey their congratulations.
“The will of the people in these Russian elections is unequivocal,” Giorgia Meloni, the head of the Fratelli d’Italia (Brothers of Italy) party, said on social media at the time.
That remark has resurfaced in recent weeks, with Meloni poised to become Italy’s first female prime minister, after the collapse of Mario Draghi’s government triggered a national election scheduled for Sunday.
Brothers of Italy party is likely to emerge as the largest political camp and forge a right-wing coalition government with Matteo Salvini’s League and Silvio Berlusconi’s Forza Italia.
The prospect of a coalition with parties that have historically friendly ties to Russia is increasing fears that Rome could nudge closer to Moscow, at a time when Europe is doing all it can to end the invasion of Ukraine. Read more…