• Italy's news in English
 
app_header_v3
Refugees in Italy revolt over lack of Wi-Fi
Angry migrants in the northern town of Ceranova have protested the lack of wifi and a cleaner in the villa where they are staying. File photo: Alberto Pizzoli/AFP

Refugees in Italy revolt over lack of Wi-Fi

The Local · 22 Dec 2015, 12:51

Published: 22 Dec 2015 11:24 GMT+01:00
Updated: 22 Dec 2015 12:51 GMT+01:00

The 24 protesting refugees from sub-Saharan Africa have been asking for somebody to help maintain order at the duplex villa in the town of Ceranova, where they have been housed since the summer.

They are also upset that Wi-Fi has not been installed in the villa, meaning they can't make Skype calls to their relatives back home, La Repubblica reported.

The protests first took place late last week when the town's refugees blocked main roads to get their message across.

The situation soon took a turn for the worse when the refugees began to tip their rubbish on to the sleepy town's main streets to make their point.

The scene led to heated arguments between the refugees and members of the local community and the town's mayor, Alessandro Grieco, had to intervene personally with the help of three police officers to defuse the situation.

“Obviously it's very important for refugees to have access to the internet and not just so they can stay in touch with their families,” Barbara Spezzi, who manages a refugee center near Turin, told The Local.

"The internet helps refugees keep updated with what's going on at home and in Italy, which helps them integrate into Italian life. It's also a great learning tool too: we had a case of a girl who was following her university lectures on YouTube."

Story continues below…

As news of the protests spread, it became a national issue, having been seized upon by Italy's anti-immigration Northern League party.

Outspoken party leader, Matteo Salvini, even joked about sending the left-wing journalist, politician and leader of the Chamber of Deputies, Laura Boldrini, to clean up the migrants' mess.

“They want someone to clean their homes – can you believe it?" Salvini asked reporters. "To keep them happy, let's send Boldrini." 

Since last week's protests, Grieco has called a meeting with the regional prefect, and expelled the ringleader of the protests, a 24-year-old man, from the refugee facility.

"Until now nothing bad had happened and we are looking into the incident. The migrants have obviously flagged up a few issues for them but this is not the way to draw attention to them.

"We absolutely won't tolerate protests like this."

For more news from Italy, join us on Facebook and Twitter.

The Local (news@thelocal.it)

Today's headlines
Why quake-hit Amatrice will never be the same again
Amatrice had been due to host its Amatriciana pasta festival this weekend. Photo: Angela Giuffrida

The Lazio town of Amatrice was the hardist-hit by Wednesday's devastating earthquake. The Local's Angela Giuffrida visited what is left of the town on Friday.

Italian flags at half mast for quake victims
More than 280 people were killed in the 6.2-magnitude earthquake that struck on August 24. Photo: Andreas Solaro /AFP

Flags flew at half mast across Italy on Saturday as the country observed a day of mourning for the victims of an earthquake that killed nearly 300 people.

Italy earthquake
Italy prepares to mourn earthquake dead
Collapsed buildings in Amatrice. Photo: Andreas Solaro/AFP

No survivors have been found since Thursday.

Italy earthquake
Rescuers search for 15 still missing in Amatrice
A suitcase in the rubble of a collapsed home in Amatrice. Photo: Angela Giuffrida/The Local

A team of specialist rescue workers from Shanghai is searching for 15 people unaccounted for in Amatrice, the Lazio town torn apart by Wednesday's devastating earthquake.

Italy earthquake
Italy’s museums offer takings to restore quake-hit region
A damaged church in Amatrice. Photo: Filippo Monteforte/AFP

Italy's museums will donate all money raised from ticket sales on Sunday to help restore cultural treasures damaged or destroyed by Wednesday’s 6.0 magnitude in central Italy.

Italy earthquake
Food the only comfort for Italy’s earthquake survivors
A refugee dines at a makeshift camp in central Italy. Photo: Mario Laporta/AFP

"Because even in these dire cases it's important to give a good meal to those who have lost everything."

Italy earthquake
In pics: Makeshift shelters house Italy's quake survivors
An earthquake victim beds down at a makeshift shelter in Amatrice. Photo: Marco Zepatella/AFP

An estimated 2,500 people have lost their homes following the 6.0 magnitude earthquake which hit central Italy on Wednesday.

Italy earthquake
Strong aftershock rattles devastated Amatrice
An aftershock measuring 4.8 struck Amatrice again on Friday morning. Photo: Filippo Monteforte/AFP

The small town of Amatrice was hit by another aftershock, measuring 4.8 in magnitude, on Friday morning, causing more damage in the centre of the town where at least 193 were killed in Wednesday’s devastating earthquake.

Italy earthquake
Three Britons among dead in Italy earthquake
Rescuers continued their search for bodies on Friday morning. Photo: Filippo Monteforte/AFP

At least eight foreigners, including three Britons, a Spanish national, a Canadian and a citizen from El Salvador, were among the 250 people killed when a powerful earthquake struck central Italy this week, officials said, as rescuers continued the grim search for corpses on Friday.

Italy earthquake
Italy earthquake death toll revised down to 241
Volunteers join rescue services in Amatrice. Photo: Filippo Monteforte/AFP

UPDATED: The death toll from a powerful earthquake in central Italy was revised downwards to 241 on Thursday but officials cautioned it could rise again as rescuers continued a grim search for corpses, as powerful aftershocks rocked the devastated area.

Sponsored Article
6 reasons expats use TransferWise to send money
National
Why discontented Italians could derail their economy
Sponsored Article
Why expats choose international health insurance
Society
Keep passports safe: Typical pickpocket scams revealed
Culture
Why coffee in Italy is a culture you must taste to understand
Sponsored Article
Jordan: where history meets adventure
Society
The richest families in Florence in 1427 are still rich today
Sponsored Article
Five things Americans should know about voting abroad
Culture
So why do pasta-loving Italians live such long lives?
National
Italy's Renzi prepares for stormy autumn
Society
This 104-year-old just saw the sea for the first time
Sponsored Article
Jordan Pass: your ticket to the experience of a lifetime
National
Should Rome give up on its 2024 Olympic dream?
Sponsored Article
Why you should attend an international job fair
Society
The Italian doctor giving hope to thousands of migrants
Culture
Ten 'Italian' dishes that don't actually exist in Italy
Sponsored Article
Why expats choose international health insurance
Sport
Five Italian athletes going for gold at the Rio Olympics
Sponsored Article
Why you should attend an international job fair
Travel
Trastevere: From a fiery past to Rome’s souvenir stand
Politics
Think Trump would be a disaster? Just ask the Italians
Sponsored Article
Why Jordan is the ‘Different’ East
National
How Brexit has helped to expose Italy’s banking malaise
Sponsored Article
Life in Jordan: 'Undiscovered treasure'
Politics
After Brexit, keep a close eye on Italy's Five Star Movement
Lifestyle
12 mistakes foreigners make when moving to Italy
National
Why Milan could be Europe's post-Brexit financial hub
Travel
Five crowd-free alternatives to Italy's tourist hotspots
National
Italian hotspots struggling with 'too many tourists'
Culture
Meet the Italian chef behind the world's best restaurant
2,496
jobs available