Venice police probing antisemitic attack on left-wing politician
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Venice police probing antisemitic attack on left-wing politician

City's mayor says authorities investigating 'fascist-like' incidents on New Year's Eve, including Nazi salutes, praising of Benito Mussolini, and references to Anne Frank

Canal Grande and Rialto Bridge, Venice. (Wikipedia/Martin Falbisoner/https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0/legalcode )
Canal Grande and Rialto Bridge, Venice. (Wikipedia/Martin Falbisoner/https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0/legalcode )

Venice’s mayor said police are investigating an antisemitic attack in which youths punched a left-wing Italian politician in St Mark’s Square.

Mayor Luigi Brugnaro tweeted that fascist-like incidents like the one that happened on New Year’s Eve “won’t be tolerated” in Venice.

Arturo Scotto, a former lawmaker, was walking with his wife on Tuesday night when eight youths yelled out “Duce! Duce!”, a reference to Italy’s Second World War fascist leader Benito Mussolini.

The youths then punched Mr Scotto in the nose.

Mr Scotto told Italian state TV that a young man who tried to help him was also beaten up.

He said the youths shouted disparaging remarks about Anne Frank, a young Jewish woman who died in a Nazi death camp.

Venice Mayor Lugi Brugnaro (Wikipedia/Alvyspera/ https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/legalcode)

Mr Brugnaro said police are examining surveillance videos to see if the culprits can be identified.

Mr Scotto said the attackers wore scarves to hide their faces.

Antisemitic incidents have been on the rise in Italy, as far-right political groups, including those with neo-fascist roots, gain traction in the country.

Mussolini’s regime had propagated anti-Jewish laws in 1938.

The head of Rome’s Jewish community, Ruth Dureghello, expressed solidarity with Mr Scotto, saying “one mustn’t give in to any form of antisemitism and racism”.

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