Dear fellow Italians,
We are nearing the elections for the Chamber of Deputies and the Senate of the Republic. Voting is the legally guaranteed constitutional right of all Italian citizens living both in Italy and abroad. Exercising that right – also the civic duty of each and every one of us – is essential to preserving a healthy democracy and useful in maintaining a sound and active relationship with the motherland.
Your identity, your bonds with Italy, which are already evident in a variety of forms and activities, find their highest expression in the act of participating in the election of the Italian Parliament. Seizing this opportunity is the best way to properly make your voices heard and to add your concerns to the public debate of a pluralist society. Each of your votes will contribute to the progress of Italy. The 12 Deputies and 6 Senators elected in the foreign jurisdiction, in accordance with the Constitution, contribute to the defence and accurate representation of your interests, of the causes that concern you, vis à vis the Italian government and within various national forums. The members of parliament elected abroad also have a role in strengthening Italy’s global image by facilitating friendships and economic and cultural exchanges with the counties in which you live.
As Minister for Foreign Affairs I am committed to making it possible, through my offices in Rome and our global network, for you to exercise your right to vote, and that responsibility has special meaning for me. I have instructed our diplomatic-consular network to provide for the most complete and detailed information possible on voting procedures, and there is a date that I would like to highlight immediately: the pre-stamped envelope, containing your marked ballots enclosed in blank envelopes, must be received by consular offices no later than 16:00 (4 p.m.) on 21 February 2013. For any and all clarifications, please do not hesitate to contact the consular office in your jurisdiction, otherwise consult the foreign ministry website: www.esteri.it.
My warmest best wishes,