Trouble with Itinerant Traders in Italy – It Can Only Get Worse – 14 August 2013
Police attacked in front of a holy shrine – it says in Il Messaggero.
The newspaper report, in Italian:
This was at the Santuario Madonna dell’Ambro in the Sibillini mountains in the Marche region of Italy. Wednesday 14 August 2013. Madonna dell'Ambro is a large church, or maybe not a church, maybe it just looks like a church, set in a valley in wild, wooded mountain countryside. It gets lots of visitors, coach parties as well as people driving there in their own cars. So . . .
It will attract those people who want to sell something to the visitors, which these days will include migrants from Africa, the so-called ambulanti abusivi, unofficial street traders.
According to the newspaper report, street traders from North Africa turned up, and the sales concession-holders, some of whom have been established there quite a long time, called the police to have them removed, whereupon the unofficial traders attacked the police, it says. Well it is quite a long way from anywhere to get to Madonna dell'Ambro, and we do not know whether these unlicensed traders walked there or got a lift from some minders, quite possibly the second and they will be in trouble if they come back having sold nothing, so perhaps they thought a fight with the police the less painful option.
Anyway, at the request of the concession holders, a patrol of carabinieri from Montemonaco went to the location at about 11 in the morning, following reports of tension between the itinerant traders over the assignation of places, they were occupying spaces that were assigned to the licensed traders. When the patrol arrived the unofficial traders ‘manifesting a strong disappointment’ attacked the police, but were stopped by the other traders who ‘intervened to block the hotheads’.
The police called reinforcements, who came from the carabinieri stations at Comunanza, Force and Amandola – quite a force. Two of the aggressors, both Moroccans living in Francavilla d’Ete – a fair old walk from Madonna dell'Ambro, about thirty miles – were identified and taken to the police barracks in Amandola. They will be arrested for violence to a public official and for aggravated injury and are due to appear before magistrates in Ascoli Piceno on 16 August.
The two policemen who were injured have reported, fortunately, abrasions that will get better within a few days.
The investigation continues to identify others who were responsible for the aggression towards the carabinieri.