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The Parlamentary Anti-Mafia Commission asks: Control infiltrations in newspapers, protect intimidated journalists

In Italy, professional secrecy is allowed only to professional journalists who have passed a state exam and not to other journalists. This must change. Moreover we must “take appropriate regulatory protections against fearless lawsuits with the aim to intimidate.” To prevent criminals and the mafia from infiltrating the media, an investigation is required as well new laws. According to the Parliamentary Anti-Mafia Commission these are the “main problems” that need to be address in order to solve the serious problem of threatened journalists in Italy. The Anti-mafia has told this to the new Parliament, and the final report has just been published.

The document, signed by Giuseppe Pisanu and approved by an overwhelming majority (three abstentions, none against), highlights a number of problems that require attention, and in particular stresses the critical issue of clarification and more strict regulation on “the relationship between the press and the economy or between the press and entrepreneurs”, calling for “a specific legislative initiative” in order to avoid criminal and mafia infiltrations.

The proposals were made in the conclusions of the parliamentary inquiry into “the contrasts of intimidations in the world of information” carried out by the Working Committee chaired by the Senator Enrico Musso. The investigation stemmed from the data of the observatory Ossigeno per l’Informazione and engaged the Committee from March to December 2012 with twenty hearings of journalists and a trip to Berlin. This trip was able to ascertain that in Germany the protection of professional secrecy for journalists is more extensive than in Italy.

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