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>>>ANSA/May Giulia's death be impetus for change says dad

>>>ANSA/May Giulia's death be impetus for change says dad

Over 8,000 people attend murdered Cecchettin's funeral in Padua

ROME, 05 December 2023, 19:28

Redazione ANSA




The femicide of Giulia Cecchettin at the hands of her ex boyfriend on November 11 must provide the impetus to fight against gender-based violence, her father Gino Cecchettin told mourners at her funeral in Padua on Tuesday.
    "May Giulia's memory inspire us to work together against violence, may her death be the impetus for change," said Cecchettin, addressing over 8,000 people gathered at the Basilica of Santa Giustina to pay their last respects to the 22-year-old Padua University biomedical engineering student whose kidnapping and murder by Filippo Turetta, 21, has sparked public anger and dismay in Italy and prompted much soul-searching about how to tackle the problem of patriarchy and gender-based violence.
    "My daughter Giulia was exactly as you have got to know her: an extraordinary young woman, cheerful and lively, never satiated with learning," continued Cecchettin, also paying homage to the way in which she had "embraced the responsibility of running the family after the untimely loss of her beloved mother" Monica last year.
    "Femicide is often the result of a culture that devalues the lives of women (who then become) victims of those who should have loved them; instead they are harassed, forced into long periods of abuse, until they have lost their freedom, before they also lose their lives," said Cecchettin.
    "How can this happen? How could this have happened to Giulia?" he asked.
    "There are many responsibilities, but the educational one involves everyone. I turn to the men first of all: we must be the first to show that we are agents of change against gender violence," he said.
    "Dear Giulia, it is time to let you go, say hello to your mother for us. We will learn to dance in the rain. Thank you for these 22 years," concluded Cecchettin.
    Giulia's coffin was then carried out of the church accompanied by a long round of applause, bell-ringng, key-rattling and shouts of "Giulia, Giulia!", including from the thousands of people who had watched the funeral on big screens in Prato della Valle square outside.
    The family had asked for mourners to hold a minute's "noise" in protest against gender-based violence including femicide.
    The government of Premier Giorgia Meloni was represented at the funeral by Justice Minister Carlo Nordio, while President Sergio Mattarella made special mention of Giulia during the Star of Merit for Labour award ceremony at the Quirinale Palace in Rome.
    The "value and respect for life must be reaffirmed with determination in every sphere, circumstance and dimension", he said.
    Lessons were suspended at Padua university where Cecchettin was due to graduate on November 16, and the rector Daniela Mapelli attended the funeral.
    Tuesday was also proclaimed a day of mourning in the Veneto region, with flags on public buildings at half mast.
    "Today, on the day of Giulia Cecchettin's funeral, I ask the entire Veneto region to send a collective signal, loud and clear, against gender violence," said Veneto Governor Luca Zaia on social media on Tuesday morning.
    "(It must be) a day that remains indelible, that marks a step forward so that events like this might never happen again," he added.
    On Monday night the headquarters of the regional government were lit up in solidarity with all victims of femicide and survivors of gender-based violence.


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