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France says 'unacceptable' that Italy deputy PM met 'yellow vests'

AFP  |  Paris 

The French foreign ministry on Wednesday denounced as "unacceptable" a meeting between Italy's and France's "yellow vest" anti-protesters.

"This new provocation is unacceptable between neighbouring countries and partners at the heart of the European Union," a said in a statement a day after Di met the protesters on French soil.

"Mr Di Maio, who has governmental responsibilities, should ensure that he does not impair with its repeated interferences our bilateral relations, in the interest of both and Italy," the said.

Di Maio, of the anti-establishment Five (M5S), announced Tuesday he had met near with and candidates on a yellow vest list for elections in May, led by

He invited them and other yellow vests to a follow-up meeting in Rome, claiming on that "the wind of change has crossed the " Tensions have flared between the two countries since the Five and far-right came to power in a coalition in last June.

Di had already drawn Paris's ire after he accused of fuelling the migrant influx to by continuing to "colonise"

That prompted to summon Italy's in protest. And De Maio's fellow deputy prime minister, Matteo Salvini, has lambasted directly by saying he is "close, with all my heart... to the French people, the millions of men and women who live in France under a terrible and terrible president".

The "yellow vest" protests against fuel taxes began in rural and small-town France in late November, before ballooning into a wider revolt against Macron's policies and governing style.

The French is hoping to forge an alliance of pro-European centrists ahead of the bloc's parliamentary vote, against a wave of populist movements in several European countries.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Thu, February 07 2019. 18:05 IST