Rome

Letta says 'good sense' for ministers to forgo from rallies

Premier wants language based on 'mutual frankness, respect'

Letta says 'good sense' for ministers to forgo from rallies

(see related stories on Letta cabinet retreat) Rome, May 13 - Premier Enrico Letta said Monday that stopping ministers from taking part in electoral rallies or televised debates not connected with their portfolios was a sensible way to prevent tensions within his left-right government exploding. Letta and members of his centre-left Democratic Party are unhappy that ministers from Silvio Berlusconi's People of Freedom (PdL) party took part in a demonstration in Brescia on Saturday against alleged persecution by some magistrates of the 76-year-old ex-premier. The rally, which included the participation of Deputy Premier and Interior Minister Angelino Alfano, was called after a Milan court failed to overturn a four-year conviction Berlusconi was handed for fraud at his media empire. "It's a decision of good sense to resolve the problems that exist and which cannot be solved with a magic wand. We need rules," said Letta at the end of a 24-hour retreat with his ministers at a former abbey in Tuscany. He added that the new government "should do a job that is based as much as possible on a language of frankness and reciprocal respect".

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