Abdel Hamid Shaari, president of the Islamic Institute in Milan, is asking to Letizia Moratti, mayor of Milan, for the authorization to build a new, proper and dignified space of worship for Muslims just outside the city. It would be a small mosque, well connected to Milan and totally self-financed. Letizia Moratti, in turn, is asking Roberto Maroni, the Italian interior minister, to issue an official directive to manage homogeneously the worship spaces of those religious communities that don’t have official relationships with the Italian state. In the meantime, Letizia Moratti guarantees Milanese citizens that she will prevent Muslims from praying in the sidewalks of a notorious area of the city (Viale Jenner, at the center of clashes and public demonstrations in the past). The Northern League component of the municipality, however, starkly refuses to recognize any other space for Muslims and declares a strong opposition.
A plethora of Mafia organizations are well rooted in the North of Italy, where they aim not only at laundering but also at controlling the territory, local institutions and tenders. When questioned about this Mafia “emergency,” all Northern League politician’s continuously circumvent the issue at hand and continue to focus on security ordinances against sellers of ethnic food.
Letizia Moratti, mayor of Milan, asked Roberto Maroni, the Italian interior minister, to issue a decree law to allow frisking migrants’ houses in order to find illegal immigrants. The decree against urban blight in action in Via Padova (the street in Milan where clashes between immigrants took place few weeks ago) mandates: kebab shops to close at 10 pm, massage centers to close at 8 pm, discos to close at 2 am, and for restaurants to close by midnight. Many view such a decree to reflect a curfew like environment that one would have experienced during periods of war.
These right wing politicians refuse to even acknowledge the presence of the Mafia in Northern Italy-as evidenced by the lack of mention on the topic in recent electoral campaigns. It has been proven that the murder rate increase, in the last 10 to 25 years, has been perpetuated by the mafia. Despite this, it would seem that the Mafia presence in North Italy is escaping the concerns of it politicians. Instead, “Padania,” the land of the Northern League, has unleashed an ideological war against a presumed “Islamic danger” while ignoring the role of the extremely powerful and dangerous Mafia clans, whose reach encroaches into public works and all big state projects.
The mayor of Milan, Letizia Moratti, has awarded a prize (Ambrogino d’oro) to the most deserving citizens of the city of Milan. Among the awarded, the president of the House of Islamic Culture in Milan, Mahmoud Asfa.
He pointed out the need, for Muslims, to have small places for worship. At the same time, he stressed his opposition to the creation of Islamic parties in Italy, preferring the integration of Muslims in the Italian political system. He also appreciated the openness demonstrated by the city council of Milan regarding the creation of small worship places for Muslim citizens.
Letizia Moratti, the mayor of Milan, announced plans to acquire what she called a world-class facility and biomedical institute, under an agreement between the Saudi Arabian General Investment Authority and a top oncology institute in Milan. Moratti recently made an official visit to the Saudi capital, Riyadh, in an effort to strengthen ties between the two nations in fields of education and culture. The institute will enroll Saudi students for higher studies and research, with an initial enrollment of up to 150 students according to Moratti.