June 14 - Angry workers carry out a spontaneous demonstration, marching on parliament as French President Francois Hollande meets with Italian Prime Minister Mario Monti. Ciara Sutton reports.
Anger over labour reforms spilled on to the streets of Rome ahead of Prime Minister Mario Monti's meeting with French president Francois Hollande. Riot police moved into action as hundreds of demonstrators marched towards parliament over tough austerity measures. (SOUNDBITE) (Italian) MAURIZIO LANDINI SECRETARY-GENERAL OF FIOM UNION SAYING: "Sometimes we feel there is a complete divide between what is discussed behind the doors of parliament and the real problems of normal people. We want democracy, we want to work and to make things work in this country." (SOUNDBITE) (Italian) UNION WORKER ALESSANDRA DIBALDI SAYING: "We think the series of reforms proposed by the Monti government are wrong and not in the interests of workers. Hollande's first official meeting with Monti comes as Italy struggles to shake off rumours it may be the next euro zone country to need a bailout. They have different political leanings but a strong relationship with Monti could help Hollande deal with Germany's demands for further austerity. Italy is seeking to cut 5 billion euros in state spending this year - nearly a billion more than previously announced. But it's benchmark 10-year yields soared over the 6 percent warning mark at a bond sale on Thursday. And Chief Economist from World First, Jeremy Cook, says the worse could still be to come. (SOUNDBITE) (English) CHIEF ECONOMIST FROM WORLD FIRST, JEREMY COOK, SAYING: "I think it is increasingly likely that in coming months that we'll see more and more pressure on Italian bonds, mainly as a result of their banking system. We've seen the fears over the Spanish banking system and how that a hundred billion bailout only really transferred that to the sovereign and therefore we've seen an increase in sovereign bond yields in Spain - and it's probably going to happen to Italy over the course of the summer." Earlier in the week Monti managed to speed through reforms - after calling an emergency meeting of parliament. But doubts remain about Italy's ability to avoid being sucked further into the debt crisis. Ciara Sutton, Reuters