Right and left-wing politicians in Rome have come out in support of the city’s Jewish community in the wake of a proposed boycott of Israeli products because of the Gaza offensive.
Flaica CUB, the small left-wing union that came up with the idea, denies its initiative is anti-Semitic. Nevertheless, Italy’s European Affairs Minister, Andrea Ronchi, says the group should be ashamed. “This news has scared everyone. I think all Romans and Italians condemn this group,” he added. Those sentiments are shared by one of the leader’s of the leftist opposition, Piero Fassino. He described the proposal as a stupid provocation: “To boycott means to negate. It’s a form of negation of Israel and its rights. But the peace in the Middle East can not be achieved by negation but by recognising the rights of Israel and of the Palestinian people,” he said. Piero Marrazzo, governor of the Lazio region of which Rome is the capital, has called the idea of boycotting Jewish shops blood-curdling and has been meeting leaders of Rome’s Jewish neighbourhood to express his solidarity.