Italian pro-life offices vandalized, attacked with Molotov cocktail

pro-life, Pro Vita & Famiglia, Italy

This weekend, tens of thousands of people rallied in Rome to mark the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women — but the rally quickly turned violent toward the headquarters of an Italian pro-life office.

Italian news outlets reported that the headquarters of Pro Vita & Famiglia (Pro-Life and Family) was attacked by an estimated 200 people, who had broken away from the march. A Molotov cocktail was found, and the building was graffitied with violent threats including, “Free abortion,” “Die, let’s choose free abortion,” and “Let’s burn the pro-lifers.”

The pro-life group issued a statement on Facebook in response to the attack. “In war mode, protesters threw bottles, stones and smoke grenades, shutters, broken glass with leaks, knocked down cameras and various attempts to set the headquarters on fire, despite the presence of law enforcement. Fortunately, our coworkers were not physically present in the office today,” spokesman Jacopo Coghe said, adding, “The assault on the headquarters of Pro Vita & Famiglia represents an attack on the freedom of all women who do not recognize themselves in the vanity and violence of these movements, the same who would claim to enter schools to promote education courses in respect against violence, bullying, affectionate and sexual education.”

They concluded, “If they think they can intimidate us with their brutal violence, they are wrong. We will continue to work with our heads held high to promote the value of life, family and the sacred freedom of education.”

This is the second attack against Pro Vita & Famiglia offices this year. In June, the offices were vandalized during an LGBT rally, during which protesters vandalized and egged the pro-life headquarters.

This attack caused serious property damage, though the attack has seemingly gone unnoticed; on Facebook, the pro-life group wrote that “[t]he silence of the media is deafening.” In another update, Coghe explained that the lives of their employees would have been at risk had they been present at the time of the attack, and called for the politicians who participated in the march to condemn the violence.

“Today, in the search at our headquarters after the violent and criminal attacks #transfeminists yesterday during the demonstration against violence against women, we found a small explosive device inside our offices, fortunately it did not come into operation,” he said, adding, “Even more than yesterday we expect from the mayor Roberto Gualtieri and the secretary of the PD Elly Schlein, who participated in the demonstration against violence against women, to distance themselves and condemn these violent and criminal acts. We invite you to come visit us and see with their own eyes the ideological fury that, in spite of the presence of the police, has caused huge damage and it just happened that they did not find our collaborators inside, which otherwise would have been in serious danger.”

Though those politicians seemingly have not yet responded, Georgia Meloni — the Italian prime minister — did.

“I don’t know how you think of fighting violence against women by becoming the protagonist of intolerable acts of violence and intimidation like those that happened on Saturday at the expense of the Pro Vita e Famiglia association,” she said in a statement. “I want to ask everyone about a trivial question: is violence always condemned or only when it is addressed to someone with whom we share ideas? This is the question we, from a certain left, have never had a clear answer to. I hope this time it arrives, from Elly Schlein, Giuseppe Conte, Maurizio Landini and Cgil, to whom we all showed our solidarity on the occasion of the shameful assault on the headquarters of the union. A devastated headquarters is always unacceptable. Especially if it is devastated in the name of women raped, beaten or killed.”

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