Rome, April 30 - Italian President Giorgio Napolitano called the difficult economic conditions and the uncertain outlook Italy faced painful, and called on government and opposition parties to work together to push through reforms necessary to spur economic growth. Napolitano was speaking ahead of Wednesday's May 1 Labor Day holiday. The president said it was the difficulties Italy currently faces that push him to "ask all Italians to take on the common objective with faith, that of building a better future". He added he in turn had accepted a request to serve out a second term last week, a first for an Italian president, "only out a sense of duty related to the difficult moment the nation is going through". Napolitano, 87, called "for the systemic reforms aimed at combatting (economic) decline to be put in place, in order to ensure a return to durable growth". "In order to achieve these objectives, it is indispensable for all social and political parties to work together, for majority parliamentary and opposition forces to do this".
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di Giovanni Pastore