Anti-racists groups in Italy who strongly oppose Matteo Salvini’s anti-immigration policies fear that the attacks on immigrants will continue to accelerate. In the past two months there have been 12 incidents of shootings, two murders and 33 physical assaults linked to racist attacks.
Opposition camp warned that the interior minister is igniting a “climate of hate” in the country.
Since entering the coalition government, the Far-right league party leader, Salvini launched a massive crackdown on illegal immigration and closed Italian ports to refuse entry to migrant rescue boats. He also promised to expel non-Italian Roma.
Grazia Naletto, Manager of Migration Policies and Racial Discrimination of the Lunaria said that the propagation on anti-migrant policies has fanned the flames of hate toward immigrants:
“Propaganda around anti-migrant policies has clearly contributed to creating a climate of hostility and to legitimizing racist violence. “We are facing a dangerous acceleration of episodes of violence against migrants.”
Naletto’s group publishes reports on racially motivated attacks in Italy.
On Sunday, 17 miles outside Rome, a Moroccan man was killed. He was followed and beaten to death by two young Italians who accused him of stealing.
Three days before the incident, in Vicenza, in the north-east of Italy, a 33-year-old factory worker from Cape Verde was shot and wounded by a 40-year-old Italian who opened fire from a window in his home.
On Thursday night in Naples, two people riding a scooter shot and wounded Cissè Elhadji Diebel, 22, a street vendor from Senegal with a regular permit of stay.
The president of the National Association of Italian Partisans, Carla Nespolo said “The extreme right has found a party through which it can speak. Migrants in Italy have taken the place of Jews during fascism. This is one of the most far-right governments since the end of fascism.”
When asked about the alarming increase in racist attacks, Salvatini said: “The wave of racism is simply an invention of the left” and on Sunday he tweeted “Many enemies, much honor.” – A veiled reference to a quote from the late fascist dictator Benito Mussolini.