A murder (of a young Egyptian man by a group of south-Americans on the 13th of February) that could have happened in any part of Milan, has triggered a press campaign that described Via Padova as a mass of ugly things, a promiscuity of people coming from everywhere, of crumbling buildings, an insecure and unlivable casaba. The journalist, who is also an inhabitant of Via Padova, suggests that the campaign has had the effect to instill in people living in that area with the idea of not being on par with such a civil city as Milan. She tries to counter the stereotype by highlighting the fact that Via Padova is a more than just a four kilometer road and is much diversified. Just as any other areas of the city, Via Padova has its good and bad areas. There are specific and clear responsibilities for the public and local authorities who have yet to take any action towards preventing the recent tension. The streets appear to be under siege due to the strong presence of the police and the army. The journalist rightly claims that the only sustainable way out of the current predicament would require farsighted re qualification policies. Such actions are needed to convince the Italian inhabitants and shopkeepers to remain, contrasting the foreigners’ invasion. In fact, a too large number of immigrants located in the same place make integration difficult. Concluding, she condemns all of the stereotypes that fix reality in an unchangeable status quo. On the contrary, each and every place is unique, neither common nor predictable.
In Sansepolcro, a town near Arezzo, the local Northern League has been denounced for having distributed samples of disinfectant to supposedly clean people’s hands from contacts with immigrants. The local sections of Rifondazione Comunista (Left), whose members confirm to have witnessed the event, have attacked the Northern League’s actions. The Northern League denies the accusation and claims that the soap was just an electoral gadget. Many national politicians are raising their objections against such a xenophobic initiative which they believe offends the identity and history of Italian people. Ahmad Giampiero Vincenzo, president of the Muslim Italian Intellectuals Association, consultant for immigration at the Senato’s Committee for Constitutional Affairs, and a member of the Great Mosque in Rome, will present a formal recourse against the Northern League defining its initiative as a serious incitement to racism that resembles similar facts taking place during the Fascist and Nazi regimes.