A school in Milan in Italy has been vandalised in a racist and homophobic attack. The School of Popular Culture in Via Bramantino, which supports integration programmes for migrants in the community, was broken into on Saturday by vandals who covered the classrooms in swastikas, obscene imagery and homophobic and xenophobic graffiti. The break-in occurs after a couple were targeted in a homophobic assault in Verona, marking the second neo-nazi attack in Italy in the past week.
The vandalism included graffiti in red spray-paint which read “Lesbians suck a dick”, “Whores’ and “Viva Salvini”. Matteo Salvini, who is Italy’s far-right Interior Minister, recently referred to African refugees as “new slaves”. Salvini has also called same-sex parents “unnatural”, and has pledged to keep all families in Italy heterosexual.
The attack on this school comes less than a week after a gay couple in Verona had petrol thrown at them in the middle of the night. Their apartment building was also vandalised with swastikas and homophobic graffiti.
Volunteers of all ages joined the school’s staff in a mission to clean up the classrooms as news of the attack spread, and the school shared images of the cleanup operation on Facebook.
Milan’s mayor, Giuseppe Sala took to Facebook to condemn the vandalism:
“Attacking a school that focuses on integration represents a hindrance to Italy’s progression. We can no longer tolerate acts like this. Milan must continue to be an open, supportive and deeply democratic city.”
Milan’s Councillor for Culture, Filippo Del Corno has called the attack the direct “result of the public policy of the Interior Minister Salvini”.
In response to the attack on the school, a demonstration of ‘Zero Tolerance’ will take place on September 30 in Piazza Duomo in Milan. The anti-fascism rally has been organised to stand up to violence against migrants, women and the LGBT+ community.
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