ROME -- President Sandro Pertini flew to Yugoslavia today to inaugurate a memorial thousands of Italians who died in battles with German troops after Italy signed an armistice with the allies in 1943.
Pertini, who will be 87 on Sunday, was accompanied by Foreign Minister Giulio Andreotti.
They flew to Titograd, near the Albanian border, where they were being met by Yugoslav President Mika Spiljak. From there the group was to travel 100 miles inland to Pljevlja, where the memorial plaque was to be unveiled.
The Italians who died belonged to the Garibaldi Brigade, formed from troops stationed in the Balkans who were ordered to fight their former German allies after the Sept. 8, 1943 armistice.
According to Italian records, some 10,000 members of the 24,000-strong brigade were killed in action, 8,000 died of illness and 2,500 were wounded.