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Mayor of Torri Benaco (Verona) prevents access to reporter at public event

Emanuele Zanini of L’Arena was not allowed to enter the auditorium, where the presentation of the summer program was taking place. Order of Veneto protests

Stefano Nicotra, mayor of Torri del Benaco (in the province of Verona), prevented the journalist Emanuele Zanini, collaborator of the newspaper L’Arena di Verona, access to a public meeting convened by the administration to explain the program of the summer events 2016. The episode occurred on June 30, 2016 at the headquarters of the auditorium of Torri di Benaco, when – on behalf of the mayor – the commander of the municipal police told Zanini that journalists could not enter. In the days before the public event, the reporter had written that one of the activities in the program, “The Boreal Festival”, was organized by far-right groups.

To tell the story to Ossigeno was the same Zanini, who received the solidarity from the Order of Journalists of the Veneto region. “It leaves bewilderment and worry that a municipal administrator may choose to prevent access, but without any reasons, to a journalist responsible for monitoring a public event – the statement of the Order said. The mayor of Torri del Benaco has clearly a singular conception of democracy and press freedom, a principle that is constitutionally recognized.”

The statement underlines that “the Order is considering whether there are grounds to file a complaint to the judiciary to determine whether such behavior constitutes a violation of law.”

COA

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