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Zagrebelsky, Vladimiro

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2 articles of this author have been cited in the European Press Review so far.

La Stampa - Italy | 03/12/2012

Italy undermines judiciary in Ilva affair

The Italian government passed a decree on Friday according to which the ailing Ilva steelworks will be allowed to continue in operation provided it cleans up its premises and safeguards the health of nearby residents. The decision is understandable for economic reasons, but puts the state on a collision course with the judiciary because just a week ago arrest warrants were issued against the operators and parts of the plant were sequestrated, judge Vladimiro Zagrebelsky writes in the liberal daily La Stampa: "The decree modifies court orders by law. Not only does it annul the sequestration of the property ordered by the courts, it also tampers with the legislation on which the court order rests. ... But what then remains of the penal code and criminal procedure? What remains of the duty of the judiciary to prosecute crimes? One should bear in mind the basic principles of modern constitutional democracy and the Declaration of Human Rights of 1789. A society in which neither rights nor the separation of powers are guaranteed cannot be said to have a constitution."

La Stampa - Italy | 06/07/2012

Italy's penal code omits torture

Eleven years after the brutal attacks by Italian police against anti-globalisation activists during the G8 summit in Genoa, Italy's cassation court in Rome upheld the convictions of senior officers who were in charge of the police operations in the final instance. But this ruling doesn't go far enough, writes judge Vladimiro Zagrebelsky in the liberal daily La Stampa: "The judgement doesn't punish the physical violence, even though it has been proven. At least some of the attacks would essentially fall under the international definition of torture. I refer here to the definition laid down in the UN Convention against Torture of 1984. Italy ratified the convention in 1988, but it has failed to include the crime of torture in its penal code. … Unfortunately this is not a purely unintentional omission. … Italy has explicitly refused to comply with the demands of the international community. This will have serious consequences for Italy's international reputation that will become even graver as soon as the European Court of Human Rights rules on the Italian government's responsibility for failing to subject torture to criminal prosecution. The corresponding complaints have already been filed with the Court."

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