ROME, Oct 22,2022- Giorgia Meloni was sworn in as Italy’s first woman prime minister, giving the country its most right-wing government since World War-II.
She takes office when Italy’s debt-laden economy once again heading into recession, firms buckling under the weight of soaring energy bills, and splits within her coalition over the war in Ukraine.
Head of the nationalist Brothers of Italy, Meloni swept to victory in the election last month as part of a coalition that included Forza Italia, led by former Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi, and Matteo Salvini’s anti-immigrant League.
Her government replaces a national unity administration piloted by former European Central Bank chief Mario Draghi.
Prime Minister Meloni’s party has neo-fascist roots, but she sought to project a moderate image during the election campaign, dropping previous anti-EU rhetoric and pledging to keep Italy at the heart of European and Western institutions.
In 1992, Meloni joined the Youth Front, the youth wing of the Italian Social Movement (MSI), a neo-fascist political party founded in 1946 by former followers of Italian fascist dictator Benito Mussolini.
She later became the national leader of Student Action, the student movement of the National Alliance (AN), a post-fascist party that became the MSI’s legal successor in 1995 and moved towards national conservatism.
A right-wing populist and nationalist, her political positions have been described as far right, which she rejects. She describes herself as a Catholic Christian and a conservative, and says she defends “God, fatherland, and family”. She is opposed to abortion, euthanasia, and marriage and parenting by same-sex couples.