10 December 2011

Revolt in the CIE of Turin: 3 injured, tension still high

The Cie of Torino
Blankets and mattresses on fire, iron bars from the cages uprooted, and a group of inmates manage to get past the first of two fences before being stopped by law enforcement officers armed with water cannons, tear gas and batons. At the centre for identification and expulsion (CIE) in Turin, the night of December 8 was a night of revolt, which ended with a mass escape attempt involving about fifty Tunisian prisoners. Three were injured in the clashes. A Tunisian youth, struck in the head with truncheons. And a police officer and a serviceman. All three were taken to the emergency room. Some calm returned at only about four a.m.

The next morning, while workers were laboured to fix the cage, a group of inmates launched a hunger strike in different areas of the CIE. The strike lasted the whole day of December 9 until, at around 10 pm, the inmates of the yellow and the white areas began to protest, beating on the iron bars, shouting, and then setting fire to mattresses and blankets in protest before the police drove them back into their rooms with fire hoses without, however, entering the cages themselves. The situation then calmed down.

Already last December 2, the CIE of Turin had been shaken by a night of revolt and repression. According to the story of the prisoners, however, that night the revolt had broken out after an ill inmate was beaten by police, guilty of having requested medical treatment too insistently.

This is all news on which the authorities still ban investigation by the press, as it has not been possible to enter CIEs since last April 1. Not even Monti’s technical government has removed circular 1305 with which censorship was re-imposed in Italy.

translated by Camilla Gamba