Italy's ruling Christian Democrat Party have cautiously agreed to talks with the Communists and other parties on future government programmes.
Italy's ruling Christian Democrat Party have cautiously agreed to talks with the Communists and other parties on future government programmes. The party no longer has a working majority in parliament. But party leaders stressed on Friday (29 April) that the all-party negotiations should be severely restricted to impending legislation and there should be no question of the Communists entering any kind of government majority. The General-Secretary of the Christian Democrats -- Signor Begnino Zaccagnini -- had a meeting with the Communist leader, Signor Enrico Berlinguar, on Friday.
SYNOPSIS: The meeting took place at the Italian parliament buildings in Rome. The talks concluded the first round of discussions with other parties. But Signor Zaccagnini's meeting with the Communists with particularly important. The Christian Democrat government owes its survival in parliament to the abstention of the Communists and centre-left parties. But Signor Berlinguer -- seen here seated on the right - has said his party will no longer give this indirect support without haying a say in government policy. It is pressing for a clear agreement on both policy and government programme. And it is also seeking Communist-sponsored members of the Cabinet to have a direct say in future government policies.
The Christian Democrat executive has said the outcome of the all-party talks must be closely scrutinised before any agreement is reached. A second round of discussions is expected to start within the next week.