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Italy’s Meloni declares victory, claims leadership for next government




This is a night of pride for the Brothers of Italy but it’s a starting point and the situation is difficult and needs contribution from everyone, Meloni said.

Italian right-wing leader Giorgia Meloni, whose party came out on top in general elections, said she would seek to lead the next government and would work for all Italians.

“Italians have sent a clear message in favour of a center-right government led by Brothers of Italy,” she told reporters in Rome on early Monday, adding that “we will do it for all” Italians.

She said that the night is a pride for the Brothers of Italy but it’s a starting point not a finishing line.

“Situation is difficult and needs contribution from everyone,” Meloni said.

“If we are called upon to govern this nation, we will do so for all Italians, with the aim of uniting the people, of exalting what unites them rather than what divides them,” Meloni told reporters. “We will not betray your trust.”

Meloni’s Brothers of Italy party came out on top in Italian elections on Sunday, according to the first exit polls, putting her eurosceptic populists on course to take power.

The party won between 22 percent and 26 percent of the vote, according to national broadcaster RAI.

A right-wing coalition with her allies, Matteo Salvini’s right-wing League and former prime minister Silvio Berlusconi’s Forza Italia, was expected to win a clear majority in both houses of parliament.

The result must still be confirmed but risks fresh trouble for the European Union, just weeks after the right wing outperformed in elections in Sweden.

READ MORE: How ‘fascist’ is the party of Giorgia Meloni, Italy’s PM frontrunner?

Democratic Party concedes defeat

Italy’s main centre-left group, the Democratic Party (PD), conceded defeat early Monday in a national election and said it would be the largest opposition force in the next parliament.

“This is a sad evening for the country,” Debora Serracchiani, a senior PD lawmaker, told reporters in the party’s first official comment on the result. “(The right) has the majority in parliament, but not in the country.”

Provisional results showed that a right-wing alliance led by Giorgia Meloni’s Brothers of Italy party had won around 43% of the vote and was on course for a clear majority in parliament.

Meloni, who campaigned on a motto of “God, country and family”, has abandoned her calls for one of Europe’s biggest economies to leave the eurozone, but says Rome must assert its interests more in Brussels.

But the self-declared “Christian mother” — whose experience of government has been limited to a stint as a minister in Berlusconi’s 2008 government — has huge challenges ahead.

Like much of Europe, Italy is suffering rampant inflation while an energy crisis looms this winter, linked to the conflict in Ukraine.

The Italian economy, the third largest in the eurozone, is also saddled with a debt worth 150 percent of gross domestic product.

READ MORE: Five things to know about Giorgia Meloni – frontrunner in Italian election

Turnout is expected to be lower than in the 2018 elections.

Meloni had been leading opinion polls since Prime Minister Mario Draghi called snap elections in July following the collapse of his national unity government.

Hers was the only party not to join Draghi’s coalition when, in February 2021, the former European Central Bank chief was parachuted in to lead a country still reeling from the coronavirus pandemic.

For many voters, Meloni was “the novelty, the only leader the Italians have not yet tried”, Wolfango Piccoli of the Teneo consultancy told AFP news agency before the election.

READ MORE: Italy’s undecideds: Can they reverse far-right’s electoral gains on Sunday?

Source: TRTWorld

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FM Shahid presents letter from Pres Solih to UAE’s President





Foreign Minister His Excellency Abdulla Shahid, the Special Envoy of President His Excellency Ibrahim Mohamed Solih has met with the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the United Arab Emirates, His Highness Sheikh Abdulla bin Zayed Al Nahyan.
At the meeting held at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of UAE, Minister Shahid handed over a letter from President Solih addressed to His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the United Arab Emirates, and conveyed greetings and well wishes from President Solih to the leadership and the Emirati people. During the meeting, the Ministers conversed on ways to further strengthen and diversify the long-standing relations between the Maldives and UAE.
Minister Shahid reiterated appreciation for the generous support and assistance provided to the Maldives through the Abu Dhabi Fund for Development, and expressed gratitude on behalf of the government and people of the Maldives for the invaluable contributions made by UAE towards the socio-economic development of the Maldives, over the years.
The two Foreign Ministers expressed their renewed commitment to working together on issues of mutual interest, both bilaterally and in the international fora. Foreign Minister Shahid was accompanied at the meeting by the Ambassador of the Republic of Maldives to the United Arab Emirates, Her Excellency Aminath Shabeena, Assistant Director at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ahmed Salman Zaki and Second Secretary of the Embassy of the Republic of Maldives in the United Arab Emirates, Fathimath Urooj Nizar.

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Defense Minister: Terror attack recently foiled one of the most dangerous planned to date





Defense Ministry Mariya Ahmed Didi has described the mass casualty terror attack using explosives recently foiled by Maldives Police Service and Maldives National Defense Force in a joint counter-terrorism operation as one of the most dangerous attacks planned to date.

Speaking at the ceremony held to mark the 29th anniversary of MNDF’s Southern Area Command – Minister Mariya stressed that the government was undertaking a number of efforts to counter the spread of extremism.

Despite these efforts, the Minister said that there are groups propagating extremism and conspiring fatal terror attacks nonstop, by allocating all their time for the purpose.

Therewith, Minister Mariya emphasized on the importance of basing actions on information attained through surveilling such conspiracies, and carrying out the necessary research.

“I believe MNDF’s area commands need to significantly increase capacity in this trajectory,” she added.

In this regard, she described the mass casualty terror attack using explosives recently foiled in a joint counter-terrorism operation as one of the most dangerous attacks planned to date.

Police have stated that three substances presumed to be explosive chemicals which was seized from the home of one of the arrestees from the operation when tested by MNDF’s Explosive Ordinance Disposal (EOD) had shown to have highly explosive substances. They emphasized that EOD reported that small quantities of the chemical can fatally injure a human, and cause great damage to goods.

A total of 14 people were arrested during this operation; 10 from Addu City, two from Male’ City and two from Guraidhoo. Police identified all the suspects as Maldivian men.

Criminal Court remanded five of them in custody pending the outcome of trial. They include a 20-year-old, 27-year-old, 30-year-old, 35-year-old, and 37-year-old.

Meanwhile, five others – an 18-year-old, two 33-year-olds, a 35-year-old, and a 46-year-old – were remanded in custody for 14 days. Four of them – a 19-year-old, two 27-year-olds, and a 28-year-old – were remanded in custody for 30 days.

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Officers smuggling telephones and drugs into prison are identified





By: Fathimath Lauza

The Commissioner of Prisons (COP) has stated that an operation is being carried out against jail officers who are illegally getting into prisons and in any other case violating the law.

Ahmed stated that a major operation has been launched to stop these incidents. After extensive consultations with the police, an operation is being conducted against the incident and the officers involved have already been identified.

Ahmed stated that one of the biggest difficulties is getting enough evidence before taking action against an employee. Therefore, the identified officers have been targeted in the operation, he explained.

The Correctional Service is working hard to prevent the smuggling of telephones and drugs into prisons. However, this problem has not been resolved so far. This week, a prison officer was arrested with drugs for trying to smuggle them into the jail. , Ahmed stated such cases have been a prime problem since the beginning of the prisons in Maldives. He stated prison officials had been also involved. “I admit that there is a hand of officers. There are some officers who have been noticed. But you know that action cannot be taken against an employee because of suspicion.”

Ahmed stated many other efforts are being made to prevent the smuggling of telephones into prisons. He stated the problem should be prevented through technology. Ahmed stated he tried to use a jammer however that was not the most desirable solution. Therefore, some of the measures taken now consist of installing antennas in the prison region and a system to detect calls going through the prison, he stated.

“Before, we had to run through the device. Even if you inserted a single device and inserted 50 SIM cards, you could do whatever you wanted inside the jail without us seeing it.” Ahmed explained.

He stated work has been started however its going to take a long time to peer a complete result. These issues have been rooted for a long term and its going to take days for the results to be reached.

Ahmed stated it would not be easy to smuggle items into prisons based at the work done in recent years. The Commissioner of Prisons Ahmed Mohammed stated the measures taken against the crime will be strengthened

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