In Italy, election campaigning has continued to be marked by violence. Fire gutted a Rome?
GV Neo-fascist rally with Romualdi addressing audience (3 shots)
GV Riot police watching
GV EXT Cinema (Social Democrats rally)
GV INT Saragat addressing rally
CU/GV Party supporters listening to Saragat (3 shots)
The need for a general election in Italy came when the minority Christian Democratic government of Aldo Moro resigned on 30 April. The government had lost the support of the Socialists and the Social Democrats. The general election, to be held on 20 June, may bring the Italian communist Party into the government after nearly 30 years in opposition.
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Background: In Italy, election campaigning has continued to be marked by violence. Fire gutted a Rome cinema on Sunday (6 June) only hours before a neo-fascist rally was to be held there.
SYNOPSIS: One of the leaders of the neo-fascist Italian Social Movement (MSI) Party, Pino Romualdi addressed an improvised outdoor meeting. He said the fire confirmed the intention of the extreme left to try and prevent his party from expressing its views.
No-one was hurt in the hour-long blaze which wrecked dozens of rows of seats and part of the screen.
The rally was called to protest at the shooting of three neo-fascists, seriously wounded in a gun battle with left-wingers on Friday (4 June) night. Signor Romualdi accused the police and ruling Christian Democratic Party of using violence for political purposes. He warned that Italy could be heading for civil war and the end of democracy.
On the same day, the Social Democrats also met in a Rome cinema. The rally was addressed by party President, Giuseppe Saragat, who said the Social Democrats were against one party domination in the Italian government. But they were strongly opposed to the Communists being members of any coalition. Signor Saragat called on the Socialist Party to ally with the Social Democrats and renew old links. The Social Democrats broke away from the former Unified Italian Socialist Party in 1969 and adopted a line politically to the right of the Socialists. the last Italian general elections was in 1972 when the Social Democrats polled the fifth largest vote. But they are not expected to repeat that performance later this month.