Italian Actress Ottavia Piccolo was stopped by a police officer at the Venice Film Festival because she was wearing a flag which represents the National Partisan Association of Italy (ANPI), an anti-fascist group, as a scarf. The action of the security official brings about serious question regarding the political climate in Italy, since the country's far-right Interior Minister Mateo Salvini heads the police forces.
The Rebirth of Fascism in Italy
On Wednesday, in an interview with local media La Nuova Venezia, Piccolo said she was stopped by police officers, at the entrance of the red carpet area of the Venice Lido, during the closing ceremony of the festival, on Saturday, for wearing an ANPI scarf.
The National Partisan Association of Italy was founded in 1945 by members of the resistance against the fascist dictatorship of Benito Mussolini.
"Unbelievable. But in what country do we live?" the actress asked during the interview, in which she also raised other questions. Piccolo believes there may be "a restriction or a directive from the Interior ministry that says that the ANPI is out of the law." The Interior Minister is Mateo Salvini, head of the far-right League party.
Piccolo remains convinced that the incident is not isolated and it bears great gravity, and promises demonstrations.
"We should meet soon, we need to make ourselves visible. All of us with the ANPI and anti-fascist partisan's scarf around the neck," she stated.
"If this wasn't something to cry for, for our country, we would laugh about it. Probably even the police are a victim scared of the very unfriendly, violent and rageful climate that you breathe in Italy," the actress, who won the best actress award in Cannes, in 1970, said. She enjoyed tremendous support on social media.
Opposition politicians have accused far-right Interior Minister Matteo Salvini of creating a climate of hate in Italy following a spate of racist attacks that have coincided with his anti-immigration policies.