- Title: ITALY: OPPOSITION VENT FURY OVER CONTROVERSIAL MEDIA LAW.
- Date: 20th February 2004
- Summary: (EU) ROME, ITALY (FEBRUARY 19, 2004) (REUTERS - ACCESS ALL) 1. GV: EXTERIOR OF PARLIAMENT 0.04 2. CLOCK TICKING 3. RUBBISH PILED UP FROM THE CANTEEN 4. INTERIOR OF LOWER HOUSE OF PARLIAMENT 5. EMPTY GOVERNMENT BENCHES 6. TIRED-LOOKING HEAD OF LOWER HOUSE OF PARLIAMENT PIERFERDINANDO CASINI, RUBBING HIS FOREHEAD 7. DEPUTY READING NEWSPAPER 8. PARLIAMENT VALET 9. DEPUTY SPEAKING SAYING THAT ITALIAN PRIME MINISTER SILVIO BERLUSCONI IS MAKING LAWS FOR HIMSELF (EU) ROME, ITALY (FEBRUARY 19) (REUTERS - ACCESS ALL) 10. (SOUNDBITE) (Italian) MEMBER OF PARLIAMENT FOR THE LEFT-WING PARTY DS ALFREDO GRANDE SAYING: "The hope of changing something is absolutely none because anyway the government has called for a confidence vote but we've given the government a really big stomach ache." 11. (SOUNDBITE) (Italian) MEMBER OF PARLIAMENT FOR BERLUSCONI'S PARTY FORZA ITALIA, FRANCO STRADELLA SAYING: "It's ok, we'll vote anyway, fortunately in a democracy the votes count and not the chatter." 12. INTERIOR OF PARLIAMENT 13. BORED-LOOKING DEPUTY 14. FEMALE DEPUTY PUTTING ON LIPSTICK 15. DEPUTY READING NEWSPAPER WHILST SPEAKING ON THE PHONE 16. HEAD OF THE LOWER HOUSE OF PARLIAMENT PIERFERDINANDO CASINI RUBBING HIS EYES (EU) MILAN, ITALY (FILE) (REUTERS - ACCESS ALL) 17. LOGO FOR NEWS BULLETIN OF RETE 4 18. VARIOUS VIEWS OF NEWS STUDIO OF RETE 4 (EU) ROME, ITALY (RECENT) (REUTERS - ACCESS ALL) 19. VARIOUS OF ITALIAN PRIME MINISTER SILVIO BERLUSCONI AT FORZA ITALIA RALLY Initials Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
- Embargoed: 6th March 2004 12:00
- Location: ROME, ITALY
- Country: Italy
- Reuters ID: LVACVXQMHOQD5PWL14GYPTBB3LYD
- Story Text: Italy's left-wing opposition hold talks for over 40
hours to vent their fury over controversial media law.
Boredom was the order of the day in Italy's
parliament on Thursday (February 18) as the country's
usually splintered centre-left demonstrated a verbal show
of unity in protest against the government.
Some 150 parliamentarians filled the benches of the
lower house and exercised their right to address parliament
on a subject of their choice in order to delay a final vote
on Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi's media law.
The protest started on Wednesday morning (February
18) and has now been going on for over 40 hours with its
conclusion not expected until late into the evening on
The government benches were empty as the
demonstration continued for its 40-th hour and noone from
the right was at hand to witness the protest. But the Head
of the Lower House of parliament, Pierferdinano Casini, who
has been forced to listen to the debates was definitely
showing signs of verbal exhaustion.
The opposition acted after the government won a
confidence motion to speed through a law that stops the
transfer of Berlusconi's Rete 4 from terrestrial to
satellite broadcasts which would cut its revenues.
The centre-left blasted Berlusconi for resorting to
the confidence tactic, which cuts short debate on
Each deputy is allowed to speak for five minutes
on their chosen topics which have so far ranged from Iraq
to how much sleep one deputy had on holiday.
"The hope of changing something is absolutely none
because the government has anyway called for a confidence
vote but we've given the government a really big stomach
ache," said MP for the left-wing DS party Alfredo Grande.
"It's ok, we'll vote anyway, fortunately in a
democracy the votes count and not the chatter," said a
grinning MP with Berlusconi's party Forza Italia, Franco
By late Wednesday evening the deputies had managed
to completely drink dry the chamber's coffee and tea
And hopefully someone will be at hand to keep the
kettles boiling as the vote is now expected to take place
on Friday (February 20) morning after all the deputies have
had their say.
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