Police arrested 38 activists Tuesday during clashes
at protests in Rome against this week's Group of Eight summit in
At one impromptu demonstration early in the day, protesters with
covered faces and helmets blocked roads and set fire to garbage
bins and tires near one of the capital's universities.
Of 36 people taken in for questioning from that rally, 11 were
detained on various charges, including a citizen each from France,
Poland and Germany, said police spokesman Vittorugo Caggiano. He
said the rest would be released later Tuesday.
As night fell, some fifty demonstrators blocked tracks at Rome's
main train station, hurling stones at police in anti-riot gear.
Caggiano said two protesters, a Spaniard and a German, were taken
in as police dispersed the crowd.
Separately, police in the city of L'Aquila seized a baseball bat
and metal bars from the car of five French protesters. They were
Several protests have been planned in Rome and L'Aquila, which
will host the Wednesday-to-Friday summit. L'Aquila was chosen to
highlight the city's devastation after the it was hit by an
earthquake in April.
Also on Tuesday, far-left groups held a peaceful protest in
Rome's historic Piazza Barberini, just below the glitzy Via Veneto,
where the U.S. Embassy and several luxury hotels hosting foreign
delegates are located.
Hundreds of people faced a heavy police contingent beating drums
and holding up banners, including one that read: "The G-8: A new
quake for L'Aquila." One protester poured red paint on the
cobblestones, shouting that it symbolized the "blood of the
The largest demonstration of the week is scheduled for Friday in
L'Aquila. Anti-globalization groups have also vowed to hold
impromptu protests across Italy.
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