Member of the European Parliament, President of the Transnational Radical Party

Born in Teramo on May 2, 1930.

He is member of Radicali Italiani and the Transnational Radical Party, for which he is President-coordinator. At the age of 20, Marco Pannella was a national representative at the university level for the Italian Liberal Party (PLI) and at 23 he was President of the Unione nazionale degli studenti, UNURI(National Union of Students).

At 24 he promoted the foundation of the Partito Radicale (hereinafter the “Radical Party”). From 1960 to 1963, he was in Paris as a correspondent of the Italian newspaper “Il Giorno”. In his political career, Mr. Pannella co-founded a series of organizations such as the League for divorce, the League for objection of conscience, the League for the abrogation of the Agreement between the Catholic Church and the Italian State (Concordato), the Centre of legal initiative “Pietro Calamandrei”, as well as the Italian Association for Demographic Education (AIED). He has been at the forefront of the promotion important reforms regarding narcotics, facing incarceration on various occasions for his civil disobediences. He played a prominent role in the pro-choice movement in Italy that led to the legalization of abortion in the early 1980s. He also promoted actions to grant electoral rights for Italians aged 18.

Engaged in the defence of civil rights in Eastern European countries, in 1968, he was arrested in Sofia for having distributed leaflets against the Communist regime. He is one of the first promoters and founders of the “Green” and “ecologist” political movements in Europe. Over the years, he has been engaged in Italy in the defence of civil rights as well as against the public financing of political parties and against corruption of Italian politics. Since the 1970s, Mr. Pannella has promoted a series of referenda on themes ranging from social to political issues, in particular on those relating to the legality of the State, the rule of law and to the administration of justice. Throughout the 1980s, he promoted international anti-prohibitionist campaigns on drugs and was one of the founders of the Radical Antiprohibitionist Coordination (CORA) and of the International Antiprohibitionist League. A believer in Gandhian non-violence, Mr. Pannella has carried out several hunger strikes in Italy and elsewhere to defend civil rights and to end extermination through starvation the world over. A disciple of Altiero Spinelli and Ernesto Rossi, Mr. Pannella was one of the first European Federalists and fought, through non-violent means, for the creation of the European Union. He was elected Secretary of the Radical Party in November 1981 and remained in office until November 1983. At the RP Congress in Budapest in 1989, he launched the creation of the Transnational Radical Party of which he became president of the Federal Council on that occasion. He is honorary President of the Party of the Rom (ROI) in the Czech Republic and he is also honorary member of the Socialist Slovene Youth. The KKL, Karen Kalehm Le Israel dedicated him a reforestation area in the desert of Negev in Israel.

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