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NEWS Italian Parliament Set to Vote on a Bill to Punish Holocaust Denial

By Adam Smulevich

The Italian Senate is about to discuss a new text of a law which increases the punishment for those responsible of promoting incitement or committing acts of racial discrimination based in part or entirely on the denial of the Holocaust.
Examined for many years by the Parliament, the law in its final formulation should be approved by the Senate on Tuesday. If approved the bill must be examined for a final review by the Chamber of Deputies.

Senator Silvana Amati, a member of the Democratic Party and the first person to propose the bill since 2012, told Pagine Ebraiche that there was a “strong urgency” for the law to be approved, “without any further loss of time.”

“We need to enact this new law as soon as possible. Also because it is a bit paradoxical that, in a period so full of new extremism, of new and dangerous ideologies, Italy must not fail to adopt a law that will counteract deniers of the holocaust,” Amati stressed.

“Currently, the Senate is engaged in the examination of a proposed bill which will introduce, if approved, a stronger punishment for anyone guilty of hate propaganda and/or denial of the Holocaust. It is a measure of fundamental importance, which will give the legislature a new legal instrument that would be at least five years behind other European nations,” said Renzo Gattegna, the President of the Union of Italian Jewish Communities.

He also said: “This challenge is also cultural and, I am sure, will be perceived in all its importance by the Senate, which will vote next Tuesday, and later by the Chamber for the final approval.”