Two referendums took place yesterday in the italian regions of Lombardy and Veneto. The vote allowed the people of these northern territories to decide whether they wanted more regional autonomy. Up to 95% of the voters supported the change in Lombardy – with around 40% participation, while this figure rose to 98% in its eastern neighbor – with almost 60% participation.
The result means that these wealthy territories – which include cities like Milan, Verona and Venice – will ask the central government for more finance and jurisdiction. Lucas Zaia, president of Veneto, has already stated that he will send a negotiation offer to the government in Rome where he will request the control of education, health, international relations and environment – amongst others – to be transfered to the regional administration. Meanwhile, the lombardan president, Roberto Marino, has described the negotiations which are to take place as the “battle of the century”.