A few months ago, nobody gave a penny for her being elected for a EU top post. In July and August, she went to Strasbourg, Brussels, Paris, Kiev and Moscow. She also travelled to Croatia, Palestine, Jordan, Egypt, Serbia, Montenegro, Chile, Colombia and Moldova.
Many member states tried to block her nomination for fear of two considerations: her inexperience – she is just 41 – and her being biased towards Russia – her first foreign visit during Italy’s last turn at the EU’s rotating presidency was to Russia. The only leader to finally abstain was Lithuanian President Dalia Grybauskaite.
She represented Italy at the NATO Parliamentary Assembly
She speaks French and English, as well as some Spanish.
She has been a member of various think-tanks and the subject of her thesis was Islamic politics.