Father sets himself on fire over custody battle

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The Sicilian man lit a cigarette in his kitchen after turning the gas on. Photo: Malcolm Murdoch/Flickr
12:10 CEST+02:00
A father of two from Sicily is in a critical condition after setting himself on fire in protest at not being allowed to see his children whenever he wanted.

The 43-year-old refuse collector suffered second and third degree burns to 30 percent of his body after switching on the gas cooker and lighting a cigarette, Corriere di Ragusa reported.

The force of the explosion smashed windows, the newspaper said.

The man, from the town of Giarratana in southern Sicily, is reported to have been unhappy about not being able to freely see his children, Ragusa News reported.

He has now been transferred to the island’s capital Palermo, where he is in intensive care.

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If he survives he will face charges of arson, Corriere said. 

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