(ANSA) - Catanzaro, January 30 - President Sergio Mattarella said Friday that defeating Calabria's powerful 'Ndrangheta mafia is possible. "The 'Ndrangheta is a threat to the entire country and defeating it is a national objective," he said in the regional capital of Catanzaro. "Defeating the 'Ndrangheta is possible. It is a duty that must be placed at the top of any government agenda."
Fighting the mafia is the key to all political progress, he added.
"Combating organized crime and the battle for... lawfulness remain the keystones of any political project," he said. "Calabria is not alone. The State is not far. Calabria is an integral and inseparable part of Italy... the issue therefore makes a claim on the civic conscience all the institutions".
Restoring dignity to public affairs is the premise for recovery, the president said. "Full dignity in public affairs is the premise for healing the wounds and for recovery," Mattarella said. "Conferring dignity to public affairs and to politics is essential today to initiating innovative development," the president said.
He also said that politics fails to rise above particular interests when it is concerned only with "the mere and conservative reproduction of consensus - sometimes bordering on the gray zone that doesn't distinguish between lawfulness and unlawfulness - in the illusion of self-preservation, while the surrounding community can't obtain any concrete benefits".
Job creation is the number one priority for Italy, he said. "Giving youth a future is the condition for the country's very survival," Mattarella went on.
"Italy needs a developed South. There can be no full growth, not even in the strongest our our regions, without the growth of the South. National unity is key to overcoming our frailties, to our exiting the crisis, to relaunching the economy, and to allow us to play a role in Europe," Mattarella said.