Police in Rome Arrest 12, Including Far-Right Leaders During Anti-COVID-19 Measures Riots

Police in Rome, Italy arrested 12 people, including far-right group leaders, after riots against anti-COVID-19 measures on Oct. 9.

According to local media, among those arrested in the demonstrations that led to clashes with the police were Roberto Fiore and Giuliano Castellino of the Forza Nuova political party.

All 12 arrested are accused of causing heavy damage, inciting violence, and resisting public officials.

Thousands gathered in central Rome to protest against anti-COVID-19 measures and some clashed with the police, who then used water cannons and tear gas in an attempt to disperse the crowds.

Local media reported that the clashes injured 38 police officers, including one with a fractured rib and another with a fractured cheekbone.

The headquarters of the Italian General Confederation of Labor (CGIL) was among the buildings damaged during the clashes.

CGIL called for Forza Nuova to be dissolved.

“The squadron assault on the national headquarters of the CGIL… is an attack on the entire Italian confederal trade union, on the world of work and on our democracy. We ask that the neo-fascist and neo-Nazi organizations be put in a position to do no harm by dissolving them by law,” CGIL said in a statement.

Prime Minister Mario Draghi’s Office released a statement that he “condemns the violence” and that the government was in “full solidarity” with CGIL.

“The right to express one’s ideas can never degenerate into acts of aggression and intimidation. The Government continues its commitment to complete the vaccination campaign against COVID-19,” the statement said.

The Public Prosecutor’s Office in Rome is reviewing videos recorded by the police in Rome as part of the ongoing investigation to determine other criminal conduct relevant to the clashes.

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