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Italy and Portugal celebrate Liberation Day under lockdown

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By Daniel Bellamy
Italy and Portugal celebrate Liberation Day under lockdown
Copyright  Andrew Medichini/Copyright 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved

Italy celebrated Liberation Day on Saturday, marking the 75th anniversary of the end of the fascist dictatorship of war-time ruler Benito Mussolini in 1945.

Italian President Sergio Mattarella marked the day by laying a wreath at the unknown soldier war memorial in Rome.

Still under lockdown, Italians sang Bella Ciao, the anthem of the anti-fascist resistance and waved flags from their balconies.

Portugal also celebrated the 46th anniversary of its Carnation Revolution when the fascist regime of António de Oliveira Salazar was overthrown in 1974.

It was partly inspired by successful independence movements in Portuguese colonies such as Angola.

In Lisbon, parliament held an official ceremony with a reduced number of MPs.

This year's anniversary is unique: for the first since the revolution Portugal has had to declare a state of emergency over the coronavirus outbreak.