Appeal for calm after murder by immigrant

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The man facing murder charges arrived in Italy through the country's migrant rescue mission, Mare Nostrum. Photo: Marina Militare
15:10 CET+01:00
The family of a student murdered by a Moroccan immigrant last week have appealed for calm over the killing, saying they do not want their relative to become a symbol of the fight against immigration.

David Raggi, 27, was killed last Thursday by 29-year-old Amine Assaoul, a Moroccan immigrant, outside a bar on Piazzetta dell’Olmo in the city of Terni, central Italy.

Assaoul, who was reportedly drunk at the time, allegedly attacked Raggi with a bottle, severing his carotid artery, following a scuffle with police. Raggi died minutes later in the arms of his friends.

Assaoul came to Italy via the island of Lampedusa in October last year, despite being expelled from the country in 2007.

The murder has caused a surge in anti-immigrant sentiment, led by far-right Northern League leader Matteo Salvini. The politician has called for a class action against Prime Minister Matteo Renzi and his deputy Angelino Alfano for the government’s immigrant rescue programme, Mare Nostrum.

Speaking on Radio Padania after the murder, Salvini said: “A 27-year-old guy did not see the sunrise because of a son of Mare Nostrum, who arrived illegally and landed thanks to Mare Nostrum.”

In an interview with Italian daily La Repubblica on Sunday, the brother of the victim, Diego Raggi, criticized the Italian authorities for allowing Assaoul to re-enter the country.

“They should have stopped David’s killer from coming back to Italy. This man should not have been here. He had already been expelled, why did they let him back in? He shouldn’t have been in the square two days ago to kill my brother.”

However he added that he did not want his brother’s death to be used to fuel anti-immigrant sentiment.

“But I don’t want this incident to become exploited. I don’t want David to become a symbol of the fight against immigration.

“He would never have allowed that, he would not accept that his death was used as part of a campaign of hate against foreigners.”

In an interview with Corriere della Sera, the victim’s father Valter Raggi, 59, called for calm.

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“To add violence to violence would be completely useless and wrong. My son David would not want it.

“Now I’m worried for my friend Mohamed, the street seller on the corner, and for all the other Moroccans in Terni. They just came to me in their delegation with their representative to offer me condolences.”

He added that he had already invited them all to his son’s funeral, which will take place on Tuesday.  

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