World Bulletin / News Desk
Thirteen Moroccan migrants held in a reception centre in Rome for more than two months have sewed their mouths shut in protest at the length of their detention, police and campaigners said on Sunday.
Italy has struggled to absorb thousands of immigrants in recent years, many of them fleeing the civil war inSyria and travelling through North Africa to the Mediterranean island of Lampedusa on flimsy boats. More than 40,000 arrived last year.
The issue has become a political battleground. Rights groups have complained about the conditions in centres while the anti-immigration Northern League has attacked the government, saying it was being too generous to new arrivals, especially at a time of recession.
The thirteen, who arrived in October and were taken to the Ponte Galeria centre the following month, sewed their mouths shut on Saturday night, repeating a protest they staged at the end of last year, said police.
"They've been left in complete uncertainty, no-one has explained anything to them," said Gabriella Guido, spokeswoman for LasciateCIEntrare, a protest group set up to highlight the tough conditions in the migrant reception centres.
Guido, who spoke to the men late on Saturday, said there was a tense climate in the centres, which were only designed for short stays. "They are under stress, angry and they've lost faith. This is the only form of protest they have."
"It's one thing if you have to put up with it for a month or so, it's very different when it's eight, nine months without any sign of when it's going to end," she added.
Their earlier demonstration coincided with a video released online showing migrants standing naked in the cold while they were sprayed for scabies.
Campaigners say most migrants want to go to other European countries but can find themselves stuck in limbo in Italy.
On Sunday, Northern League Senator Massimo Bitonci said the migrants were being treated over generously in comparison with Italians struggling in the recession.
"In a country where there are no resources you wonder what services the interior minister has had to cut to provide this benefit to the migrants," he said in a statement.
His groups has opposed moves by the coalition government of Prime Minister Enrico Letta to lift criminal penalties on people caught entering the country without authorization.
He and Merkel had sent a joint message of condolence to the families of those killed in the Monday attack during a concert by US pop star Ariana Grande, he added.
Speaking ahead of her departure for a NATO summit in Brussels, May said she would "make clear to President (Donald) Trump that intelligence which is shared between our law enforcement agencies must remain secure".
One woman arrested by armed police on Wednesday was released a few hours later without charge, leaving 10 men still in custody Thursday, including suspected killer Salman Abedi's father and brother in Libya.
Police said they were serving warrants linked to unrelated criminal investigations when they came under gunfire at the Santa Lucia farming estate, some 860 kilometers (530 miles) from Belem, capital of Para state.
28-member alliance pledges more intelligence support in the fight against ISIL, but rules out combat role
Trump faced protests on his arrival in Brussels, but he is getting a red-carpet welcome from Western allies eager to persuade him that his earlier criticisms of them were misplaced.
Leaks by US officials to media ‘arrogant, wrong and disrespectful to Greater Manchester’, mayor says
The huge social network said that the new design will offer a "carousel" with a variety of websites.
"Trump not welcome" said banners waved by the crowd, which police said numbered around 9,000. Organisers put the size of the demonstration at 12,000.
Prime Minister Bohuslav Sobotka had demanded the sacking of Andrej Babis, the billionaire founder of the sprawling Agrofert conglomerate, accusing him of tax evasion and multiple conflicts of interest.
Attorney general Luisa Ortega said in a public speech that 55 people have been killed so far in the unrest: 52 civilians and three police.
Corruption was widespread under longtime president Zine El Abidine Ben Ali, who was ousted in a 2011 uprising, and has remained endemic since.
Rudd complained to the US Department of Homeland Security and other intelligence branches about leaks to US media of details of the probe into the deadly Monday attack and the bomber's identity that had not yet been made public.
"They are implicated in affairs of corruption and suspected of plotting against state security through incitement and alleged financing of the protest movements in Tataouine and other regions," he said.
North African country typically prone to sandstorms during onset of spring
Balkan state to join alliance at Thursday's summit amid Russian criticisms