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Italy approves €2 billion in aid for flood-hit areas

Meloni unveils emergency relief package.

The Italian cabinet of premier Giorgia Meloni on Tuesday approved emergency funds of more than €2 billion for areas in the Emilia-Romagna and Marche regions devastated by floods.

Meloni, who visited Emilia-Romagna on Sunday after leaving the G7 summit in Japan a day early, said the aid package is "the first important response" for areas affected by floods which claimed the lives of at least 14 people and destroyed thousands of homes, businesses and farmland.

The package suspends the deadline for tax and social contributions in affected areas until the end of August and also includes €100 million in compensation for farmers and a "one-off payment of up to €3,000" for self-employed workers who have been forced to stop working.

Meloni was joined at the press briefing by Emilia-Romagna governor Stefano Bonaccini who told reporters that the European Commission president Ursula von der Leyen would visit flood-hit areas in the region on Thursday.

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