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Six immigrants injured in Italy drive-by shooting

A man draped in an Italian flag has injured six in a drive-by shooting apparently targeted at foreigners in Macerata, central Italy.

Six immigrants injured in Italy drive-by shooting
Police arrest the suspect. Photo: Macerata Police
According to the Il Resto del Carlino newspaper, the man —  a 28-year-old local with links to the far-right Northern League party — fired his first shots around north of the city and then drove around the city centre, apparently targeting immigrants. 
 
Local authorities said that after the suspect's arrest it was safe for residents to go outside, after issuing an alert around midday warning locals to stay inside until the “dangerous situation” had subsided.
 
All of the victims have been hospitalized, although only one appears to have been seriously injured, with a shot hitting her in the abdomen.
 
“The wounded persons are of foreign nationality,” police said in a statement. 
 
The paper claims that the shooting began at 11.00am and continued for about two hours until the man was arrested, having abandoning his car near the town's war memorial. 
 
After leaving the car, the man mounted the monument and performed a fascist 'Roman' salute. 
 
The police have released a picture of the shaven-headed man, draped in an Italian flag, as he was taken away. 
 
According to La Repubblica the suspect had put himself forward as a candidate for Italy's Northern League in the 2017 municipal elections, and was pictured in a party manifesto next to the party's mayoral candidate Luigi Baldassarri. He failed to win a seat.
 
According to the newspaper, the man has admitted to both carry out the shootings and to performing a 'Roman salute', another name for the fascist gesture.
 
Local media have linked the attack to the murder of an 18-year-girl whose dismembered body was found in two suitcases last Wednesday. Police are holding a Nigerian man custody over the killing. 
 
The local municipality raised an alert at around 12pm, warning residents to stay inside until the “dangerous situation” had subsided. Following the suspect's arrest a  few hours later, the mayor said it was safe to go outside.

ROME

‘Bank robber’ rescued in Rome after tunnel collapses

Four people were arrested in Rome after a suspected would-be bank robber was rescued from a tunnel under a road, police said on Friday.

'Bank robber' rescued in Rome after tunnel collapses

An Italian man had to be rescued after becoming trapped in a collapsed tunnel near the Vatican, suspected of being part of a gang burrowing its way to a nearby bank.

Firefighters spent eight hours digging him out from under a road in the west of Rome, before he was finally freed on Thursday evening and taken to hospital.

“Two people from Naples were arrested for resisting a public official and two, from Rome, for damage” to public property, a police spokesman told AFP.

The rescued man, one of the two Romans, remains in hospital, he said without giving an update on his condition.

“We are still investigating, we do not exclude that they are thieves, it is one of the theories,” he said.

For Italian newspapers, however, the motive was clear, with reports noting the tunnel was found near a bank ahead of the August 15th long weekend, when residents traditionally head out of town and much of Rome is left empty.

“The hole gang,” headlined newspapers Repubblica and Corriere della Sera, while La Stampa said: “They dig a tunnel to rob a bank, and one of them is buried underground.”

Other reports referred to the suspected burglar as l’uomo-talpa, or ‘mole man’.

An AFP reporter at the scene on Thursday saw the man brought out alive on a stretcher, after a day-long operation involving dozens of emergency service workers using mechanical diggers.

The tunnel began underneath an empty shop that had recently been rented.

“We all thought that the people there were renovating the place. So we had no suspicions and we did not hear noises either,” a resident, Michele, who lives in the same building told AFP.

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