Internet no replacement for 'democratic participation'

Napolitano says parties must renew and organize

Internet no replacement for 'democratic participation'

Rome, April 22 - Newly re-elected Italian President Giorgio Napolitano emphasised during his inaugural address on Monday that the Internet was not a true replacement for authentic democratic participation. "The Internet offers new political possibilities, but there is no participation without political parties able to renew themselves or organized political movements tied to democratic methods and constitutional imperatives," Napolitano said. The web-based, anti-establishment 5-Star Movement (M5S) of comedian Beppe Grillo refused an alliance with Pier Luigi Bersani's center-left party that won Italy's February 24-25 elections but failed to win a working majority in the Senate, trapping the country in a political gridlock.

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