Interesting tidbit in The Independent about how a murder near some Roma camps has sparked the normally unresponsive Italian government into overdrive in an effort to deport foreigners, starting, of course, with the expulsion of a group of Roma and the destruction of their improvised homes.

Of broader interest is how this reflects growing anti-immigrant attitudes Europe-wide (often commented on here) and how those are being reflected in legislature:

A new law on security has been creeping through parliament: one of its central provisions is that foreigners belonging to EU countries and resident in Italy can be expelled on the orders of local prefects if they are a threat to “public security”. No trial is necessary. On Wednesday night, at the urging of Walter Veltroni, the Mayor of Rome and leader of a new centrist party, the Democratic Party, that provision was extracted from the law, quickly redrafted as a “decree-law”, a sort of diktat, and signed by the President overnight. From being the sluggard of the EU, suddenly Italy was in the vanguard. “First 5,000 expulsions to go ahead,” promised La Repubblica newspaper.

And once again statistics belie common perception. In many places it is found that immigrants commit no more crime, and sometimes even less crime, than native citizens. In London, the Independent explains, immigrants are 27% of the population and commit only 20% of the crime. And yet, fear mongering continues.

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