The fatal blow that a local politician from the right-wing national party Lega fired at a 39-year-old Moroccan on Tuesday evening rekindled the debate over self-defense and gun ownership in Italy. The fatal incident in the town of Voghera, in the province of Pavia, came after a clash between the Moroccan and Lega city councilor Massimo Adriatici, head of security. According to media reports, the Moroccan, known for various crimes, but above all for his obvious psychological instability, harassed passers-by and restaurant customers in front of a cafe-bar in the city about 70 kilometers south of Milan. The Adriatici city council reportedly confronted the man and alerted the police. As a result, shortly after 10 p.m., there was apparently an argument between the two men.
Political correspondent for Italy, the Vatican, Albania and Malta based in Rome.
According to Adriatici, he was pushed to the ground by the Moroccan, and the shot accidentally came off his already drawn pistol and hit the attacker in the chest. The Moroccan, who was apparently heavily drunk at the time of the incident, died early Wednesday morning from his injuries. According to eyewitness accounts in the Italian media, however, Adriatici would have drawn his weapon, pointed at the unarmed Moroccan, then would have fired without having attacked him first. Adriatici, 47, who was Voghera’s police chief until 2011 and was previously in the police force himself, had a firearms license for the firearm.
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After a first interrogation by the riflemen, Adriatici was placed under house arrest on Tuesday evening. The prosecution has opened an investigation into suspicions of illegal use of firearms and manslaughter against the politician and the lawyer. A detention test date was expected until Thursday evening. Prosecutors had demanded that pre-trial detention be maintained under house arrest. The leader of the Lega party, the former interior minister Matteo Salvini, took Adriatici against possible prejudices and referred to a case of “self-defense”. Victim of an attack, the town hall accidentally reacted with a shot which unfortunately fatally affected a foreign citizen, ”said Salvini. In the event of an attack, “self-defense is always legitimate,” said the former Minister of the Interior.
Social Democratic Party leader Enrico Letta called for a blanket ban on the possession of firearms for individuals after the incident. “Only riflemen and police should be armed,” Letta said. The incident, and in particular the heated debate over its background, could be another stress test for Prime Minister Mario Draghi’s coalition, which includes both the Lega and the Social Democrats.