Thousands of people have rallied in Macerata, Italy, to demonstrate against racism and fascism in the wake of a recent right-wing shooting.
The Rebirth of Fascism in Italy
The protest was launched in response to violent attacks on Feb. 3, when a far-right former Northern League candidate at local elections shot six people in what police said was a racially motivated attack.
Luca Traini, 28, told police he was avenging the death of an 18-year-old Italian Pamela Mastropietro, whose dismembered body was discovered days earlier stuffed into two suitcases. A Nigerian migrant has been arrested in connection with the murder.
Saturday's demonstration was organized by the Italian Partisan National Association (ANPI), labor unions, youth groups and leftist movements. At least 15,000 people took part, chanting: "We are all anti-fascist!"
"We are here because we want to be a dam against this mountain of hate which is spreading continuously, a social hatred against migrants and, in general, against the poor," one protester said.
Valentina Giuliodora, who also took part, said: "Many people came to the streets here in Macerata and in many other cities in Italy to say no to racism and no to fascism, to recognize those founding values of our constitution which was born from resistance and partisans."
At the time of Traini's arrest, he was pictured wearing an Italian flag tied around his neck. He was also reported to have given a fascist salute and shouted "Long Live Italy."
Similar demonstrations have been staged in Bologna, Milan and Turin in response to the escalation in anti-immigrant and right-wing movements across Europe.