The Italian Constitution grew out of a need to overcome and banish hatred as the measure of human relations, President Sergio Mattarella said on Friday.
Speaking at the annual Meeting of Catholic evangelical organisation Communion and Liberation (CL), Maattarella said, “Human civilisation requires us to defeat that hatred in relations between people, by severely sanctioning their behaviour and thus creating the basis for the rules of our coexistence”.
The president recalled how in the post-war Constituent Assembly “different opinions met in a spirit of sharing to affirm the values of dignity and equality of all people, of peace, of freedom”.
“This is how our Constitution was born: with friendship as a resource to draw on, in order to overcome barriers and obstacles together, to express our true humanity,” he continued.
Don’t stir up divisions
Mattarella also warned against the use of “pretexts” to “stir up divisions”.
“There is never a shortage of pretexts for stirring up divisions, be it the invocation of ideological differences, ethnic characteristics, deceptive class struggles or the desire to revive anachronistic nationalism. What is happening on our European borders following the invasion of Ukraine by the Russian Federation is a dramatic example of this,” he said.
The drama of refugees
In the same speech, Matterlla also addressed the issue of immigration. He called on the EU to work harder to combat the ongoing flow of migrants to Italy and other European countries.
He called for “a concrete and constant commitment from the European Union” and “support for the countries of origin of migratory flows”.
“It must be understood that only regular pathways for admission, which must be sustainable but in a sufficiently large number, provide the means to end the cruel trafficking of human beings,” said the president.
“The prospect and hope of arrival, without cost and inhuman suffering, would induce people to wait for legal authorisation to come,” he added.