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Italian Interior Minister Orders Transfer of Police Officials After Probe into Conduct at G8 Summit

HeadlineAug 03, 2001

Italy’s interior minister yesterday ordered the transfer of three top police officials following a probe into the conduct of security forces at last month’s Group of 8 summit in Genoa. He did not explain the transfer, but the probe has focused on the legitimacy of a bloody police raid on a school serving as a media center and sleeping quarters for anti-globalization groups, and on allegations that arrested activists were beaten at a police station.

Meanwhile, international journalist bodies and media watchdogs have expressed grave concern over Italian prosecutors’ efforts to seize journalists’ photographs and video footage of protests at the G8 summit. Over the past week, Genoa state prosecutors have issued a series of orders to media organizations to hand over photos and TV cassettes of the demonstration in the city during the July 20 to 22 summit of world leaders. A spokesperson for Reporters Without Borders said, “We’re completely against the idea that journalists should be used in one way or another as a substitute to make up for the fact that the police or magistrates were not there. That is not our job.” He said, “If people realize that the work of photographers and cameramen will end up in the hands of police, then they will no longer be able to carry out their work. Obviously, it puts the journalists in danger.”

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