Italian official fired for supporting Russia — Analysis

Stefano Gizzi has had his powers revoked after he published a photo of the letter ‘Z’ and expressed solidarity with Moscow

After expressing outrage over publicly supporting Russia via a Facebook post, Stefano Gizzi (the Councilor for Culture of Ceccano), Italy, had his powers removed.

The official shared a picture of the letter ‘Z’, which is now associated with Russia’s ongoing military offensive in Ukraine, as it has appeared on Russian tanks vehicles participating in the operation, and wrote: “Solidarity with Russia, the Ribbon of St. George, victorious over the Dragon.”

The post was apparently taken down by Facebook shortly after it was published, but it nevertheless managed to spark a wave of outrage, as several of Gizzi’s fellow politicians, including from his own ‘Lega’ party, called for him to be fired and for the Mayor of Ceccano to distance himself from Gizzi and his “shameful” and “intolerable declaration.”

Regional councilor Mauro Buchini said that Gizzi was his favorite. “Must apologize. To the Ukrainian people, to women raped and killed, to children who are terrified, killed or abandoned, to all those who have lost their lives or forced to flee to other countries.” 

Roberto Caligiore, Ceccano Mayor, has officially removed the power of Gizzi. This is in response to what many have called a witch hunt against proRussian sentiments. Most Italian politicians are taking a hard line against Russia in the midst of the conflict in Ukraine.

Russia blasts Italian newspaper over Putin article

As relations between Italy and Russia have been steadily declining, Italian officials confiscated assets worth $882 million belonging to Russians.

Anti-Russian statements in the Italian media have meanwhile been boiling over to the extreme, with one newspaper, La Stampa, receiving a formal complaint from Russia’s ambassador to Italy last week over its headline questioning the possibility of assassinating Russian President Vladimir Putin, with the ambassador claiming it was a violation of the Italian criminal code, as incitement to commit a crime is a punishable offense.

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