Nazi salutes at a memorial event spark outrage in Italy

Hundreds of neo-fascist activists performed Nazi salutes during a memorial event outside the former HQ of the Italian Social Movement in Rome.

On Sunday evening, activists gathered outside the former headquarters of the now-defunct Italian Social Movement (MSI) party to commemorate the 46th anniversary of the death of three neo-fascist teenage activists, reports the Euronews.

The attendees extended their right hands and chanted „present” three times. They then shouted, „For all fallen comrades!”

Known locally as the Roman salute, the gesture is closely associated with the fascist regime of Benito Mussolini, who aligned Italy with Nazi Germany during World War II.

Italian opposition leaders have called on Giorgia Meloni’s rightwing government to publicly denounce the incident and ban neofascist groups after a chilling video emerged of the hundreds of people making the fascist salutes during the event.

The ceremony was condemned by multiple politicians, and the vice president of the Chamber of Deputies, Sergio Costa, promised to request the Prosecutor’s Office to check whether „any crimes have been committed during the commemoration, including the advocacy of fascism.”

While Meloni’s leading party, the Brothers of Italy (FdI), has been accused of sympathies for the far-right (for a group that was the successor to the MSI was involved in its foundation), Meloni has denied any ties to fascism. Fabio Rampelli, another vice president of the Chamber of Deputies and a senior FdI member, said his party is „light years away” from far-right activists, adding that the party is not involved on any level in such demonstrations.

Deputy Prime Minister Antonio Tajani said the displays of the fascist salute must be „condemned by everyone” and that „according to the law, one cannot make apologies for fascism in our country.”


Photo credit: AP Photo