An Italian gay couple was attacked in the middle of the night in their home in Stallavena in the province of Verona. Angelo Amato and Andrea Gardoni awoke to noises coming from outside their apartment, and when Gardoni opened the door an unknown man threw a bucket of petrol at him, damaging his eye. Additionally, the attack caused Gardoni bruising as he fell to the ground.
The attacker fled before he could start the fire.
Three extra cans of petrol and bottles of spray-paint were found on the landing, and their building had been vandalised with swastikas and graffiti reading: “We will put you all in the gas chambers”. Additionally, the men reported receiving written death threats in the post.
The incident in Stallavena comes just over a month after a separate homophobic attack in Verona. On August 11, a married couple were holding hands when they were assaulted by a group of men outside the steps of the Gran Guardia Palace. The group verbally assaulted the couple before punching one of them in the face. A 21-year-old man was arrested and charged with harassment, personal injury, extortion and brawl.
Gabriele Piazzoni of Acrigay, the national LGBT+ organisation in Italy released a statement following the recent attacks:
“We are witnessing a very serious and alarming increase in homophobic and transphobic violence. Fascism in this country is out of control. They are legitimized and strengthened by the current government policy.
“In a Republic that is based on an anti-fascist constitution, these attacks are more than enough to motivate a firm and urgent intervention from the government.
“Not only that, we ask the whole anti-fascist community of this country to mobilize.”
Piazzoni sent his love and support to the affected couples and the organisation announced that it will soon release its plan to counter anti-LGBT+ violence in Italy.
© 2018 GCN (Gay Community News). All rights reserved.
For 30 years GCN has been a vital, free-of-charge information service for Ireland’s LGBT+ community. We want to go on providing this community hub in print and online, helping countless individuals across the country, but the revenue from advertising across the media is falling.
GCN needs your support. If you value having an independent LGBT+ media in Ireland, you can help fund it for just €1.99 per month. Support Ireland’s free, independent LGBT+ media.