Rome protesters call for job creation push

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Photo: Filippo Monteforte/AFP
10:26 CEST+02:00
Tens of thousands of people rallied in Rome on Saturday, calling on the government to do more to create new jobs and to boost the spending power of workers.

The protest comes less than two months after Italy's new right-left coalition government came to power under Prime Minister Enrico Letta following a long-drawn political squabble on the back of February's inconclusive elections.

"There's no more time to lose. The unions consider it urgent that employment returns as a (top) priority on the political and economic agenda," a joint statement from the country's three main trade unions said.

"Investments, income redistribution and a recovery in consumption are vital to support our economy."

Italy's unemployment rate has ticked up to 12 percent, but for youths aged between 15-24, it has climbed up to a massive 40.5 percent.

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The eurozone's third largest economy plunged into recession at the end of 2011, with debt creeping up to some 120 percent of gross domestic product.

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