Italy has paid hommage to Aldo Moro, the politician assassinated thirty years ago by the Red Brigades. An official ceremony was held in the exact spot where Moro’s body was found on May 9th 1978, riddled with bullets.
The Red Brigades parked a car with his body in the boot in the centre of Rome, halfway between the headquarters of his Christian Democrat party and the Communist party.
It marked a tragic end to the 55-day hostage drama sparked when Italy’s five-time former prime minister was kidnapped in a shoot-out which killed his five bodyguards.
It was Aldo Moro who tried to forge stability in Italy in the 1970’s by proposing solidarity with the Communists. The interior minister at the time, Francesco Cossiga, is said to have seen him as a political threat.
Moro sent letters from his captivity to politicians and the Pope, highly critical of the-then Prime Minister Giulio Andreotti.
“Cossiga benefitted from Moro not being freed,” said Ferdinando Imposimato, the investigating judge. “He had an interest in Moro being killed by the Red Brigades because Moro originated the historic compromise dialogue between the Catholics and the Communists which Cossiga didn’t want.”
Francesco Cossigo resigned when Moro’s body was found but has always refuted such allegations. He later become president of Italy.
People asked why the government refused to negotiate Aldo Moro’s release.
His daughter, Maria Fida Moro, said: “There were a series of external negotiations of international importance, involving organisations like Caritas, the UN and others which my family supported, but which were all stopped by the government.”
Some say the Italian government knew all along where Moro was being held. Others blame the American CIA. Cossiga did not attend the memorial ceremony.
Italy has declassified all the official documents concerning the Moro affair and already put some online.