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Anarchists and suspected mafia target Italian media

The following is a CPJ Blog post by Nataliya Rovenskaya/CPJ Europe and Central Asia Consultant:

The last several months in Italy have seen a few disquieting attacks against independent media and an investigative reporter. In one case, the widely distributed independent newspaper La Stampa received an explosive device in the mail. The Federazione Anarchica Italiana (FAI), an anarchist organization, claimed responsibility and ominously noted that La Stampa was just one of many newspapers that could be a target of FAI's war against the state. CPJ research shows that the state of press freedom in Italy is among the most volatile in Western Europe, with violence and legal action sometimes perpetrated by criminal groups or political actors.

A device containing powder and cables was sent to La Stampa's offices in Turin, Italy, on April 9, according to La Stampa and Italian news agency ANSA. Fortunately, the bomb did not detonate. In an April 12 letter published by Genoan independent newspaper Il Secolo XIX, FAI claimed to have sent the package in retaliation for La Stampa's alleged support of a criminal case against several of the anarchist group's "friends." The letter was titled "Operation Hunt the Spy" and accused La Stampa of being "on the forefront of corroborating evidence against individuals at war with the state." It continued, "La Stampa is just one of many newspapers of the regime, and, therefore, any [paper] is a possible target of our war against the state and society that every day supports and legitimizes its existence." A La Stampa journalist told CPJ that the newspaper could not be certain about the specific motive behind the attack.

Read the full story on CPJ's website.

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