Parolin defends occupied-building intervention

Problem regards children, elderly says Vatican Sec' of State

(ANSA) - Milan, May 14 - Vatican Secretary of State Pietro Parolin on Tuesday defended the controversial decision by the papal almoner, Cardinal Konrad Krajewski, to turn the electricity back on at a Rome building illegally occupied by homeless people at the weekend. The building had been without power since May 6 due to a dispute over unpaid bills.
    Deputy Premier and Interior Minister Matteo Salvini criticised the move, saying "supporting illegal conduct is never a good signal". "I have seen lots of interpretations and lots of controversy," Parolin said.
    "I personally think that the effort should be made to understand the sense of this gesture, which is to attract everyone's attention to a real problem that involves people, children, the elderly". Parolin denied that the squatters had been a special case.
    "The Church already does this, it helps everybody," he said, replying to Salvini's demand that the Church pay struggling Italians' power bills.
    A complaint against person or persons unknown for illegally hooking up the site and stealing energy had been filed by Areti, the power network company of Rome electricity utility ACEA.
    Areti sources said it was essential to get back into the building to make the power generator safe.
    "There are lots of Italian people and legally resident immigrants who pay their bills, even if they are in difficulty," Salvini said Monday. "As interior minister, I guarantee the rules (are respected).
    "If the people in the Vatican want to pay the bills of all the Italians in hardship, we give them a bank account (for it)".


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