The visit of Belarusian MP Igor Zavalei, who recently spent several days on the Adriatic coast of Italy, caused a scandal in the country: one of the politicians who met with him was accused of being close to “Putin’s world” and demanded to expel him from the party. The situation has been brought to the attention of the newspaper Flagstaff.

The case concerns Mauro Lucentini, an MP from the nationalist party Liga. On the eve of the parliamentary elections to be held in Italy on September 25, he spoke with Zavalei and described the meeting as “a constructive dialogue on various aspects of the Russian-Ukrainian military conflict, economic sanctions, trade, and energy costs.

This did not go unnoticed by political competitors for the parliamentary seat. For example, Alberto Losacco, the regional commissioner of the Democratic Party, condemned the meeting “with a representative of the Kremlin’s puppet dictatorial regime, which has been repeatedly condemned internationally for repressing political opponents,” and called it evidence of the close connection between the “League” and the Kremlin.

The parliamentarian wondered if the head of the Marke region was aware of the fact that the meeting with the Belarusian deputy had been allegedly organized by the local administration:

  • Does President Acquaroli (Francesco Acquaroli – president of the Marche region. – Ed.) know about all this? Has there been approval from him? If not, why hasn’t a rebuttal been announced yet?

Democratic Party deputy Irene Manzi said that Lucentini’s meeting with the Belarusian deputy directly damages Italy economically. She drew attention to the fact that Italy enjoys the credit facilities of the European Central Bank and is protected from the increase in the gas prices above the general ceiling established in the European Union thanks to its accession to the European Union:

  • It is not forgivable that Lucentini, instead of realizing the importance of the issue, continues to demonstrate his closeness to the Lukashenko regime. <…> Our security and economic recovery depend on the international position of the country. Without Europe, without the resources obtained after COVID-19, Italy would be in a much worse situation.