Police and MP investigate funeral with Nazi flag in Rome

ROME, JAN 11 (ANSA) – The Rome Prosecutor’s Office opened a formal investigation on Tuesday (11) into a funeral in the Italian capital where a flag with a Nazi swastika was placed over the coffin.

The case, which will be carried out by the Division of General Investigations and Special Operations (Digos) of the State Police and the Carabineros, gained wide national repercussion after the publication of a video on the website “Open”.

The images show the coffin being removed from the church of Saint Lucia and the people who are in the place make the gesture with their right arm raised, as occurred during the regime of Adolf Hitler in Germany. After the salute, the flag was taken down.

With the repercussion, it was possible to ascertain that the funeral was for Alessia Augello, 44, a militant of the far-right and neo-Nazi Força Nova movement. The woman died after health complications from surgery and was buried on Monday (10).

This Tuesday, the Diocese of Rome expressed itself “strongly deploring” what happened outside the church.

“What happened yesterday, in front of the parish of Saint Lucia, happened completely without the knowledge of the parish priest, Don Alessandro Zenobbi and all the parish clergy, at the end of the celebration of a funeral”, he said in a note, noting that it was placed on the coffin “a horrendous symbol also against Christianity”.

The diocese still claims that this is “serious, offensive and unacceptable ideological instrumentation”.

This is the second time in less than four months that the neo-Nazi group Força Nova has been involved in a police investigation.

In October, members of the organization invaded the headquarters of a trade union in Rome during a demonstration against the sanitary pass and against the vaccination of Covid-19.

In addition, civil entities once again demanded the dissolution of Força Nova as a political organization. The Senate even managed to pass a motion on the case, but pressure from right-wing parties “mitigated” the crisis and the analysis is stalled.

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