Monday, 25 October 2010

Violent Protests Result in Plans for New Dump Being Put on Hold


Yesterday the Italian government offered to suspend the opening of a new waste dump in an attempt to stop violent protests, which have taken place over the last month.

Vehicles trying to take rubbish into an existing dump have been set on fire, tree trunks have blocked the road and police have had rocks and firecrackers thrown at them.

Police have also confirmed that, close to the where the protests have taken place, small quantities of explosives have been found.

The Prime Minister has promised to release £12.4 million to improve the existing dump, which local residents say gives off a foul smell and claim that it has been used to dump toxic waste.

The residents are wary of agreeing to landfill sites or incinerators. They fear this could attract mobsters from other parts of Italy to come and dump toxic waste.

Plans for a second dump at Terzigno, which is in a national park, we’re announced, scrapped and then reinstated. The latest plan is to suspend the dump and to clean up the new one, using it until it is full. This deal, however, is conditional on an end to the violence.

The mayors of the surrounding towns, who have backed the protests, initially refused to agree to the terms on offer and demanded more stringent guarantees.

Gennaro Langella, mayor of nearby Boscoreale, said he had detected on the government side an "interest in maintaining [their] commitments".

He and the mayors of three other towns went ahead with a peaceful march today that ended at the entrance to the existing dump, where they laid a wreath "in remembrance of the way the Vesuvius [National] Park died".


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