In a letter sent to the British Ambassador in Italy Christopher Prentice, published by Resto al Sud, Naples city councillor Nino Daniele insists that, far from being a dangerous city, Naples is a safe and popular tourist destination.
The letter comes days after Rome’s mayor hit back at the British Foreign Office’s warning of petty crime in Rome in its travel advice to citizens travelling in Italy.
Citing a TripAdvisor survey, councillor Nino Daniele notes that London is among the “ten most dangerous cities in Europe”, while Naples is not.
The continual increase in tourism, says Daniele, “clearly shows that Naples has become a tourist destination of choice and no longer a town to pass through.”
“This figure makes us proud and more responsible, alert and attentive than ever to increase the reception service and security devices that Naples, like any big city in the world, must guarantee for its citizens and guests.
“We are aware and security conscious, however, [judging] by the press or even by institutional messages which sometimes come from alarmist warnings about the city of Naples, they are disproportionate and undocumented.”
Daniele points to the travel advice issued by the Foreign Office in London on their official website and invites staff at the Ministry to come to Naples “so they can see for themselves what life is like as a tourist”.
The letter ends with the hope that Britain will offer more “balanced information” about the Naples.
A spokesperson at the British embassy in Rome told The Local that Daniele would receive a reply, adding that the UK government frequently reviewed its travel advice.
“The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) keeps its travel advice under continuous review based on up to date information and analysis from our experts in country.
“The safety of British nationals abroad is important to the FCO and we attach great importance to providing information about personal safety and security overseas to enable people to make informed decisions about travel," the spokesperson said.
Last week, Ignazio Marino slammed the Foreign Office’s advice as “misleading and false”, saying London was in fact "much more dangerous" than the Italian capital.
While the British Foreign Office says on its website that “crime levels are generally low” in Italy, it warns of “higher levels of petty crime (particularly bag snatching and pick-pocketing) in the big city centres.”
It advises tourists to pay particular attention to gangs who it claims hassle and jostle tourists to distract them, “while other members of the gang go into action.”
Moreover, it warns tourists to be vigilant of thieves who target passengers unloading baggage from trains and coaches travelling to and from the main airports.
Do you think Naples is dangerous? How does it compare to London? Let us know in the comments section below.