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Wednesday, August 1, 2018

Italian athlete Daisy Osakue victim of a racist attack

Por Jade

The aggression suffered by the Italian athlete Daisy Osakue when she was heading to her house in Moncalieri, a city of 55,000 inhabitants in the province of Turin, creates some alarm. From a car in motion, around 1:30 in the morning, two men threw eggs injuring an eye. The athlete, born in Turin of Nigerian parents and Italian promise in the discus throw, had to be operated on for a corneal injury, which could jeopardize her participation in the European Athletics Berlin on August 6. It is suspected that it has been an act of racism, taking into account the climate that is being experienced in Italy in some sectors of the extreme right against immigrants.

The Carabinieri try to show caution, excluding that the motivation is racist. The researchers explain that a few days ago the same car had been marked by analogous episodes of egg throwing to pedestrians. But being the umpteenth serious case that occurs in recent weeks many think that it is racism. This is what the athlete herself believes, who, with a striking bandage on her left eye, declared: "It was a stupid and gratuitous attack. A racist attack I would like to talk to these young people, understand why they have done such a thing. They did not want to attack me like Daisy, but they wanted to attack me as a black girl. In that area there are several prostitutes, they will have confused me with one of them. I had already been the victim of episodes of racism, but only verbal. But when the word is passed to the facts it means that another wall has been overcome ». After the assault, the photo of the young woman with one eye closed and in tears was published on Instagram by Luca Paladini, a rights activist of the LGTB collective (lesbians, gays, transsexuals and bisexuals).

Soon it became viral, giving way to an open political confrontation over the numerous episodes of violence against foreigners or blacks that have happened in Italy in recent months and with greater continuity in recent weeks. The former prime minister, Matteo Renzi, expressed with great indignation, speaking of emergency situation: "Attacks against people of different skin color are an emergency.

This is already evidence that no one can deny, especially if it sits in the government of Italy ». The vice president of the government and interior minister, Matteo Salvini, has responded with some contempt to Renzi, showing his hard line against immigration: "Racism warning in Italy? Let's not say nonsense. I remember that only in the last three days, in the middle of the general silence, the police have arrested 95 immigrants, while another 414 have been denounced ». Salvini ends, as always, blaming the left of the situation: "All aggression is punished and condemned, but certainly the mass immigration allowed by the left in recent years has not helped." Today in wide sectors, on the right and on the left, criticizes the immigration policy carried out by the Renzi Government, but it is no less true that Interior Minister Salvini tends to heat the xenophobic climate almost daily, with the risk that this entails.

In fact, the debate on racism in Italy is getting stronge

r every day. The most serious newspapers and commentators point out that the danger of racism in Italy exists and that it is not, as Matteo Salvini says, «an invention of the left». The leader of the League reduces everything to isolated cases: "Accusing all Italians and the government of racism, after some limited episodes, is crazy. I remember that the crimes committed every day in Italy by immigrants are about 700, almost a third of the total.

This is the only real alarm against which I as a minister am fighting." Salvini is benefiting from the climate against immigration that is growing in the country. The polls give it around 30% in intention to vote, well above the 17.5% he obtained in the last elections of March 4. But, at the same time, Salvini continues to receive much criticism for his radical and aggressive policy. For example, he is accused of considering a simple crime what happened a couple of days ago in Partinico (Palermo), where a group of young people beat up a Senegalese young man of 19 years, who served as a waiter in a bar, while they shouted: "Get out of here, dirty black."

That is, Salvini is told from many sectors of the country that you cannot close your eyes or underestimate the fact that a 13-year-old gypsy girl or a colored worker who works on a scaffold is shot from a ball. Tired of this type of criticism, the leader of the League has posted on Twitter a phrase that has raised great scandal: "So many enemies, so much honor." It is a well-known phrase that was part of the verbal armament of the dictator Benito Mussolini. Few doubt the existence of a racist spiral in Italy. And what is worse: there is an increase in the number of those who believe that violence can be used against anyone who causes discomfort. It is a debate that also dominates much of today. Of this lament especially the businessmen, because they consider that this debate serves the government as a curtain to cover their inability to deal with other serious problems in the country, such as growth and work, among many others.