Northern Italian regions of Lombardy and Veneto to vote in autonomy referendums

Northern Italian regions of Lombardy and Veneto to vote in autonomy referendums

Today, the restive northern regions of Lombardy and Veneto will vote in a non-binding referendum on greater autonomy from the

Lombardy Veneto autonomy vote

Photo: Bergamojoh

Today, the restive northern regions of Lombardy and Veneto will vote in a non-binding referendum on greater autonomy from the central government.

There’s long been a political divide between Italy’s rich north and poorer south. Both Lombardy and Veneto have governors from the far-right Northern League, which has sought full independence from Italy in the past.

Lombardy and Veneto—home to Milan and Venice respectively—account for almost a third of the country’s economy and a quarter of its population. Tax is the main grievance; Lombardy annually sends $63 billion more than it receives back from Rome. The anticipated “yes” vote will prove a powerful argument to push for change.

Despite the rumblings, there is no strong sentiment to break away from Italy. Even the organisers do not want independence; they want a better financial deal.

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