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Elections in Italy and crime in Georgia

10 minutes
First broadcast:
Friday 25 January 2013

Italy is in the grip of an election campaign. Polling day next month will mark a return to full-blown democracy.

For more than a year the country has been run by a boring grey army of professors and experts led by Mario Monti. They were asked to take over when Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi resigned at the height of a financial crisis.

Berlusconi’s reputation precedes him – and it’s anything but grey and boring. Rome correspondent Alan Johnston finds that the real winner of the election might not be either man. Instead Pier Luigi Bersani, a cigar-smoking former Communist, looks set to inherit the air.

Damien McGuinness reports on a prisoner release in Tbilisi. It is a bold move by the new government, which considered them political prisoners, thrown into jail, beaten and abused – because they dared to speak out against the former administration.

But the suspicion is that some of the released prisoners are really violent criminals, and some Georgians are worried about a return to the bad old days of the 90s, when crime was both highly organised and widespread.



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