Up to 70 Italian cities have seen protests demanding that the current government step down over their handling of the coronavirus, and calling for an Italian exit from the EU. 

Protesters – including many orange vest demonstrators – called for a new government and a return to the Italian lira in place of the euro, it was reported.

Italy has been particularly badly hit by the pandemic and fears of recession have stoked anger in the country which has already seen anti-EU sentiment grow in recent times.

Italians were angered during the pandemic when Germany and the Netherlands shut down requests from France, Italy and Spain for mutualised debt for the bloc to share the burden of economic recovery.