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Police grab pair who threatened to set selves on fire

Men seek political asylum from Italian government in Vatican

11 February, 17:19
Police grab pair who threatened to set selves on fire (ANSA) - Rome, February 11 - Police officers bearing blankets grabbed two protesters who were carrying gasoline and a lighter and had threatened Tuesday to set themselves on fire in St. Peter's Square at the Vatican.

The pair, who took part in an anti-government protest Monday in Piazza Montecitorio, later spent the night with other protesters at Santa Maria Maggiore near Rome's Termini rail station.

They had asked Pope Francis for asylum in the Vatican.

They were part of the Forconi (Pitchfork) movement which started as a group of austerity-weary farmers and truckers and has since grown to include anti-European protesters of all stripes, many of whom have been charged with looting and destroying public property in various cities around Italy.

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