Death of Giorgio Napolitano: the Italian political class pays tribute to him

As the announcement of the death of former Italian President Giorgio Napolitano (2006-2015), at the age of 98, arrived on Friday evening, the entire Italian political class paid tribute to him

Death of Giorgio Napolitano: the Italian political class pays tribute to him

As the announcement of the death of former Italian President Giorgio Napolitano (2006-2015), at the age of 98, arrived on Friday evening, the entire Italian political class paid tribute to him. The politician was the historical leader of the Communist Party and a promoter of European construction.

This Neapolitan, born under Mussolini on June 29, 1925, has served as head of state in numerous governments in an Italy with chronically unstable executives. Giorgia Meloni, leader of the post-fascist Fratelli d'Italia party and "president of the council" since October 2022, soberly offered "the deepest condolences" from her cabinet to the family of the former president.

The current President of the Republic, Sergio Mattarella, recalled the European commitment of the former member of the Parliament of Strasbourg who led “important battles for social development, peace and progress in Italy and in Europe”.

In a telegram to his widow, Pope Francis, traveling to Marseille, saluted a man who had devoted his political action to preserving the “unity and harmony” of his country.

Considered for years as the guarantor of Italy's stability, Giorgio Napolitano was elected in 2006. From the resignation of Romano Prodi in 2008 after only two years in government to the arrival of Matteo Renzi in February 2014, by the way by the resignations of Silvio Berlusconi, Mario Monti and Enrico Letta, Girogio Napolitano managed a particularly turbulent phase in Italy.

Recognized for his moderation, his prudence and his sense of state, he had been integrated into the Fascist university groups like most of the students under Mussolini, but had at the same time engaged, from the age of 17, in a group of communist resistance fighters, before joining the party in 1945 and being elected to Parliament for the first time in 1953.

Perceived as a reformist, he nevertheless approved the repression of the Budapest insurrection crushed on November 4, 1956 by Soviet tanks. Giorgio Napolitano went to Budapest in 2006 to pay his respects at the grave of the leader of the insurrection, Imre Nagy.