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Italy: Appeal by journalists: CPT, the denial of information
01 March 2006
Italian journalists cannot enter the Centri di permanenza temporanea e assistenza (Centres for Temporary Stay and Assistance, Italy's detention centres for foreigners).
The Minister of the Interior has always forbidden entry to workers from the media in the name of the privacy of immigrants, even when the Garante (ombudsman) says that immigrants are the ones who should decide about their privacy, and no one else. Recently, the Ministry has reached the point of denying journalists entry even to a centre before it comes ito use: it is the case of the CPTA of Gorizia (in the north-eastern Friuli-Venezia-Giulia region), to which a journalist had asked to be allowed before it opened, stressing that until there are any immigrants, no one's privacy is being violated. The Ministry replied that article 21 of the Regulation on immigration, in point 7, establishes who is allowed to enter the CPTAs (relatives of the detained people, religious ministers, lawyers and representatives from embassies).
It is not by chance that this response does not list MPs who, by virtue of their role, are actually allowed to inspect the centres. The same should be the case for journalists. But, most of all, it is worth highlighting that another article 21 exists, in the Constitution, which establishes press freedom. For this reason, we ask that journalists be allowed to enter and tell what the Centri di Permanenza Temporanea are like. The time has come to put an end to this illegal practice, that has so far been adopted so scrupulously as to make the question arise inevitably: what is there to hide?
First signatures: Giovanni Maria Bellu, Mariuccia Ciotta, Milena Gabanelli, Fabrizio Gatti, Gad Lerner, Gabriele Polo, Paolo Rumiz, Piero Sansonetti, Gian Antonio Stella.
*** This appeal has already been sent to the Ordine nazionale dei giornalisti, to ask it to intervene before the interior ministry.
To support the initiative: email@example.com
The original, in Italian:
CPT, l'informazione negata
Appello dei giornalisti italiani,
is available at: http://www.meltingpot.org/articolo6996.html