Prodi, Veltroni appeal for left unity

At least for regional elections in Lombardy, Lazio

(ANSA) - Rome, January 11 - Former premier Romano Prodi and former Democratic Party (PD) leader Walter Veltroni have launched appeals for centre-left unity ahead of March's general election and regional votes in Lombardy and Lazio, La Repubblica and La Stampa reported on Thursday.
    The new Free and Equal (LeU) party led by Senate Speaker Pietro Grasso has so far ruled out forming an election pact with the PD.
    The LeU features many former PD members who left the party due to hostility towards its leader, ex-premier Matteo Renzi.
    "The centre-left parties should come to their senses and get together for the regional elections and for the national elections too," former European Commission president and twice premier Prodi was quoted as saying. Former Rome mayor Veltroni said it would be "an authentic crime to stand separately in two fundamentally important regions for the country".