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Italian voting class for Muslims shows only one party

The left-wing Italian Democratic Party (PD) hosted a class for Muslim voters this week in Milan, using ballot examples with only one choice: the Democratic Party.

Published: March 4, 2018, 10:05 am

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    The instruction on how to vote in this weekend’s general election, was held at the Islamic Center of Milan and Lombardy.

    The class was organised by the Milan secretary of the PD Pietro Bussolati and municipal councillor Sumaya Abdel Qader, according to Italian daily Il Giornale.

    Visual material surfaced from the event which showed the PD politician alongside Sameh Meligy, an Egyptian with reported ties to the Muslim Brotherhood. The Brotherhood is listed as a terror group in many countries, and Meligy himself is said to be on a terror blacklist in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Breitbart reported.

    La Lega leader Matteo Salvini commented on the PD’s Muslim voting class, telling voters: “I swear on the gospel… Choose the Italy you want to leave to your children.”

    A Milan mosque has meanwhile called on Muslims to vote for the centre-left coalition and parties favourable to granting birthplace citizenship.

    The Segrate mosque, also known as Masjid al-Rahmàn, put out a notice instructing believers to vote for the left-wing coalition led by the Democratic Party and former Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi because of their proposal to change the Italian citizenship laws to allow anyone born on Italian soil to gain automatic citizenship, as in the United States.

    The current law in Italy requires at least one of the parents of a child to have Italian citizenship before the child can be granted automatic citizenship.

    Political analysts in Rome told the British Financial Times that Matteo Salvini ran the election’s most energetic campaign against immigration. “Salvini has really toured Italy, he really made an effort – even in areas in the south where the League has had a presence only recently,” says Marco Sonsini, an analyst at Telos A&S.

    While Pope Francis has been a staunch defender of migrant rights, Salvini has announced himself as a defender of Europe’s Christian values. He waved a copy of the Gospel at a recent meeting in Milan, a gesture which was denounced by Vatican officials.

    On foreign policy, Salvini has called for the EU to drop sanctions against Russia.

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