The Italian police arrested 19 suspected neo-fascists on Thursday, November 28, and seized several weapons and xenophobic and anti-Semitic propaganda material found in their possession. The arrests were made during countrywide raids termed ‘Operation Black Shadow.’ All the arrested individuals are alleged to be involved in groundwork for the creation of an openly pro-Nazi political party, the Italian National Socialist Workers’ Party.
According to reports, the raids were conducted in the backdrop of death threats issued by neo-fascists against Liliana Segre, an 89-year-old senator and Holocaust survivor. Segre has called for the formation of an Italian parliamentary committee to combat anti-Semitic hate in the country. Her proposal was approved in the parliament. However, the Italian far-right, including the nationalist League party led by Matteo Salvini, the center-right Forza Italia and the far-right Brothers of Italy, refused to support the proposal.
Anti-Semitism has been on the rise in Italy. The country’s Observatory on Anti-Semitism reported that 190 anti-Semitic attacks have already taken place in the first nine months of this year. A weapons cartel allegedly run by a leader of the far-right Forza Nuova party was busted earlier in July by the anti-terror unit of the Turin police, Digos.