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Censorship allegations against Rai: Meloni in the crossfire of criticism

Censorship allegations against Rai: Meloni in the crossfire of criticism
Giorgia Meloni

The Rai is criticized for disinviting the writer and Mussolini expert Antonio Scurati from taking part in a political talk show on public television at short notice. The 54-year-old Scurati was supposed to have read out a monologue on the occasion of “Liberation Day” on April 25th on the Rai 3 broadcaster’s “Chesarà” program on Saturday evening. On the public holiday, the country commemorates the liberation of Italy after the partisan uprisings of April 1945 against the German occupiers and their fascist allies.

This sparked a heated controversy. The Rai decided to terminate Scurati’s contract on the grounds that it did not want to pay 1,800 euros for reading a 3,500-character monologue. Scurati then made his short essay available free of charge to the presenter, who then read the text on her show.

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“Never separated from the neo-fascist past”

In his text, which was also published by numerous newspapers on Sunday, Scurati recalls the murder of the socialist politician Giacomo Matteotti by Mussolini’s fascists on June 10, 1924, as well as the Wehrmacht’s massacre of Italian civilians in the spring of 1944. He complained that Meloni would never have “broken away from their neo-fascist past”. She and her “post-fascist party” would instead try to “rewrite history.”

The text of the monologue was later published online and shared by Prime Minister Meloni on her Facebook profile. “In an Italy with so many problems, the left is once again causing unnecessary conflict. The left complains about censorship, the Rai replies that it simply refused to pay 1,800 euros (the monthly salary of many employees) for a one-minute monologue. I don’t know where the truth lies, but I am now publishing the text of the monologue myself (which I hope I don’t have to pay for),” Meloni wrote on social networks.

“Censorship and Violence”

Scurati replied that the issue of his fee was just a pretext to silence him. This is violence, the author complained. The journalists’ union Usigrai criticized that the “control of the Rai leadership over information is becoming more oppressive every day” and announced a five-day strike. Meloni has been accused for months of having filled several top positions in Rai with trusted people.

Scurati’s disinvitation also triggered a storm of indignation in the opposition. Elly Schlein, head of the social democratic Partito Democratico, accused the right-wing government of “censorship and violence”.

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Source: Nachrichten

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