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Battisti arrested and M5S propaganda video backfires

24 3 2
18.01.2019

Report. Italian Justice Minister Alfonso Bonafede posted a video of a left-wing terrorist being arrested and drew swift condemnation from opposition parties, jurists and even the Vatican.

written by Eleonora Martini

Topic Italy

ROME

January 18, 2019

Cesare Battisti, a former member of a violent, far-left organization in the ‘70s, had been given a life sentence in Italy for four murders and had been living as a fugitive in South America after escaping from prison. On Monday, he was extradited to Italy to serve out his sentence.

As one would expect, the swirl of public attention surrounding his arrival was exploited by the current government in every way possible—including by making a shocking propaganda video about Battisti and his arrest and extradition, featuring him as unwilling participant. The video was posted by Justice Minister Alfonso Bonafede on his Facebook page, and occasioned a storm of outrage in an Italy that had seemed dazed and numbed before the displays of triumphalist judiciary populism staged by the yellow-brown government.

On Wednesday, the National Ombudsman for the rights of persons detained or deprived of their liberty, Mauro Palma, urged the Minister of Justice to immediately remove the propaganda video, as it was in violation of several laws protecting the dignity of prisoners. In parallel, the professional association of Roman criminal........

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