In the delightful confection that is Modern Multicultural Milan, two of the flavors in the recipe — gypsies and Muslims — don’t seem to mix all that well.
Wild West public housing: Guerilla war between tenants and illegal Roma [Gypsies]
June 11, 2022
High tension in the public housing periphery of Milan, where 60 persons, illegal and legal, faced off against each other in a brawl lasting over two hours.
by Francesca Galici
The outskirts of Milan are a very dangerous powder keg, where even the smallest problem risks being transformed into a tragedy. That is shown by what happened in Via Bolla, a free zone for crime and offenses, in the Gallaratese quarter of Milan, where an argument between neighbors was transformed into a brawl that involved 60 persons, many of whom were Roma [Gypsies] and illegal immigrants. “We only defended ourselves. The Roma used bars [rods], and they threw their children at us to attack us,” the residents say today, who decide to raise their voices to protest and to talk to reporters about last night’s battles.
The spokesperson for the residents stated: “The Roma who live illegally in public housing and in campers beneath the building began to burn rubber with their cars in the square. We were startled and went down to see what was happening.” At that point, the brawl broke out: The Roma reportedly took some rods from a nearby construction site: “We defended ourselves with kicks and punches, but we didn’t touch the children.” Then the residents called the police: “We stayed up all night, I was escorted by the police into my house. At my residence, there are only five of us Italians”. As reported by the residents, it is not the first time they have been attacked.
As the Corriere della Sera reports, what occurred in the night between Friday and Saturday is only the epilogue of long days of strong tensions. Sixty persons living in Via Bolla armed themselves with knives, bars, and clubs, and confronted each other. Fireworks also exploded, and within a few minutes, chaos broke out, ten police patrol cars rushed to the scene, but they were not sufficient to contain the revolt. Five other patrols in riot gear had to be added in order to bring the situation back to calm. It took two hours for the police to put down the brawl and secure the quarter. The final toll is several injured, among them, a 44-year-old woman, a 17-year-old boy, and a 2-year-old child, all of Romanian origin.
But it is only an apparent peace, a quiet passage until the first disagreement again leads to an explosion of the spirits of the residents. Here, day and night, high-cylinder sedans carry out the assignment of guarding the quarter. They make the rounds to protect the squatters, checking whether there are suspicious police movements or new possible occupants. At the base of all this, as also told by the residents, there is the custom of conducting illegal races with high-cylinder cars on the part of the Roma, which often run the risk of causing accidents, and which also involve children. The legal residents are exhausted; they would like to live in a civil and healthy environment, but the crime in this pocket of Milan is already rampant, and everyone seems to have lost the hope of being able to recover this area of the metropolis. The only solution identified till now by Aler* is to demolish the buildings, already dilapidated and abandoned to their destiny. But the residents are asking for more protection.
In the face of the comments of the Democrat Party (PD), which has targeted the Aler management, Silvia Sardone, advisor to the Lega [party] in Milan, has raised her voice. “They point the finger at Aler, showing all of their ignorance: The agency, in fact, has no jurisdiction for public order, unlike the municipality of Milan, administered for eleven years by the Left, which will not use local police patrols in support of other police forces concerning evictions and to have them patrol the territory, especially in the more difficult quarters like via Bolla.” The Lega party member then added, “Maybe the PD forgets that the Roma and the squatters who populate those public flats can do whatever they want due to their leniency and their unchecked desire for integration, which coincidentally, remains only and exclusively on paper.” That of via Bolla was only one of so many episodes, and Silvia Sardone underlined that “if Milan is at the head of the classification in crime in all of Italy, the responsibility is only on the Left.”
|*||Aler is a public housing management agency for the Lombardy region.