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Tens of thousands demonstrate in Rome against racism and the government

Rome, 19.10.2009 6:34, (ROMEA)

On 17 October, tens of thousands of people demonstrated in the center of Rome against racism in general and the government’s immigration policy in particular. They were criticizing a new law introduced by the Berlusconi cabinet which has created the specific crime of “illegal immigration”, AFP reports.

Demonstrators carried signs reading “No to Racism and the Criminalization of Illegal Immigration”, “No Expulsion of Immigrants” and “Berlusconi, Leave!” The march was accompanied by music and dance. The event, which commemorated the 20th anniversary of the first-ever such demonstration in Italy, was organized by trade unions and left-wing political parties. No incidents were reported.

"After 20 years, racism has not yet been defeated. It still creates victims and is fuelled by the policies of the Berlusconi government," the call to demonstrate read.

"I am demonstrating today because with the current government the situation is becoming even harder,” said Babacar, a 27-year-old truck driver from Senegal. He and approximately 300 other people traveled all the way from the southern Italian city of Caserte to demonstrate in the capital, AFP reports.

ČTK, Gwendolyn Albert, ROMEA, ROMEA, ČTK, translated by Gwendolyn Albert
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