Monday, August 04, 2008

Italy: troops hit the streets and groups of more than three people become illegal...

The anti-gathering laws were enacted as thousands of soldiers were due to take to the streets of Italian cities for the first time on Monday under a controversial move by Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi to fight crime. 

Massimo Giordano, a member of Italy's anti immigration Northern League party, defended the anti-gathering motion and claimed it would cut down on unruly behaviour. 

However opposition councillors said it was "reminiscent of Benito Mussolini's edict of the 1920's which banned groups of five or more people". 

The ban will not affect courting couples who flock to parks and gardens in the northern Italian city of Novara, where Mr Giordano holds power, but if anyone is caught in a group of three or more they face a fine of 500 euro (£350). 

Mr Giordano said that the edict would ban "gatherings in a bid to protect public decorum and prevent damage to public parks and gardens" from people who gathered in them at night. 

Novara, which has a population of 100,000, is not seen as a particularly crime-ridden or violent city but the mayor passed the law after several elderly residents complained of noise. More...

See also: Italy has started fingerprinting the Roma gypsies: what's coming next?

And this: Italy: first they came for the gypsies, now they are coming for everyone else...

And this: Italy: heading towards a new kind of fascism?

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