Update: This report originally stated that Ignazio Marino won the mayoral race, however he led by a 12 point margin, so he and Gianni Alemanno will now go to a run off on 9 – 10 June.
A candidate in the race for the mayoral seat in the Italian city of Rome, who promised to introduce same-sex civil unions in the city, has led in the poll by a wide margin, and will now go to a run-off on 9 and 10 June.
Upon making the announcement, he said: ”Diversity is a resource.”
The results of the election were announced early on Tuesday, and Mr Marino won by a 12-point margin, with 43% of the poll, beating centre-right mayor Gianni Alemanno, Marcello De Vito, a candidate of anti-establishment 5-Star Movement, and businessman Alfio Marchini.
He also went on to say that he and his administration would go further, to introduce school programs to educate children on gay rights
Giancarlo Galan is confident that he will receive support from colleagues within ex-premier Silvio Berlusconi’s centre-right People of Freedom (PdL) party.
Italy does not currently legally recognise any kind of same-sex unions.
Two weeks ago, less than 24 hours after being sworn in as a member of Italy’s new coalition government, a junior equalities minister was removed from her post for saying that gay people invite discrimination by “ghettoising” themselves.
Berlusconi claimed in December that his opponents had accused him of everything “except being gay and stealing money from Italians.”Prior to that, in March 2011, Mr Berlusconi declared that gay couples in Italy would never be allowed to marry or have adoption rights.