19 May 2013

Union protest against govt policies in Rome

8:44 am on 19 May 2013

About 100,000 protesters, led by trade unions, held a rally in Rome on Saturday against the policies of the new coalition government in Italy.

Wielding red flags and placards, they urged Prime Minister Enrico Letta to scrap austerity measures and focus on job creation.

Italy is in its longest recession in more than 40 years. National debt is now about 127% of annual economic output, second only to Greece in the eurozone.

The BBC reports unemployment is at a record high of 11.5% - 38% for the under-25s.

The rally was organised by FIOM, the metalworkers' union, and the CGIL union.