Bad News from Italy – Ossigeno REVIEW 28th January 2024

Questo articolo è disponibile anche in: Italian


A periodic review of news published by Ossigeno per l’Informazione and its observatory on intimidation and threats to journalists and suppressed news in Italy

OSSIGENO March 2, 2024 – In recent weeks Ossigeno has spoken about: Alberto Salmè, Josè Trovato, Il Giornale di Vicenza, Giuseppe Spallino, Stefano Origone, Antonio Mazzeo, Massimiliano Scagliarini, Giorgia Mennuni, Fernando Bocchetti, Gianpaolo Sarti, Giovanni Del Giaccio, Marco Lombardi, Pino Neri, Mariano Giustino, Thomas Mackinson and Manuele Bonaccorsi, Paolo Orofino, Vincenzo Iurillo, Marco Zavagli, of the editorial offices of La Provincia di Cremona, il Secolo XIX, Genova 24, Il Vorio newspaper, and of the state broadcaster Rai’s regional offices in Venice, Terni and Catania.

In January-February 2024, monitoring by the Ossigeno observatory confirmed that in Italy intolerance towards journalists who publish news unappreciated by those in power remains high and manifests itself in various forms that are not adequately challenged: violence, intimidation, abuse of legal processes, denigration . The news platform provided numerous examples: journalists who were justified in receiving  police protection, others who were wiretapped  without being investigated, entire editorial offices who were subjected to threats with slogans on walls, reporters who were publicly insulted, others who had to face long trials before seeing their right to publish information recognized, a reporter who accidentally learned that he was being sued for some time The climate is burdensome but there is no public debate about these issues. The political class has other thoughts and is not taking action even if the Italian Parliament has found the time to discuss six motions on this matter (see here). Political and ideological divisions prevail which they should not in the face of such an evident and dramatic problem. Thus the very idea of freedom of the press appears uncertain, weakened. This is also evident from the low level of debate on the case of Julian Assange, who has been detained for years for having revealed documents indicating war crimes and now risks extradition to the United States where he could be sentenced to over a hundred years in prison. The drama concerns us closely. Yet it is perceived as if it were taking place in another world, as if it deserved only superficial solidarity, as if it did not pose a problem to us too. In Italy, a country where state secrecy has been invoked for much less, where a journalist’s professional secrecy can be circumvented without violating the law, we would do well to ask ourselves what a journalist would risk if he made revelations similar to those of Julian Assange, and by virtue of which laws both current and dormant in our judicial system.


Calabria:  The case of the reporter Orofino intercepted with Trojan spyware without his being investigated, during the investigations for judicial corruption of the chief prosecutor of Castrovillari transferred there by the Consiglio Superiore della Magistratura (CSM the Superior Council of Magistracy) (read)

Campania: the police protect the reporter Vincenzo Iurillo from ‘Il Fatto Quotidiano’ – After repeated threats and intimidation by a building contractor from the Sorrento coast who ended up under house arrest (read here)

Press Freedom: In the Italian Parliament  6 motions broken into 195 parts –shared out among  the political forces – only the document of the ruling majority approved in full (read)


In Italy the month of January is a very sad one for journalists. Ossigeno has called it the “month of the dead”, because six of the thirty media workers killed over the last sixty years lost their lives in the first month of the year. They are Giuseppe “Pippo” Fava (Catania, 5 January 1984), Giuseppe “Beppe” Alfano (Barcelona Pozzo di Gotto, 8 January 1993), Mario Francese (Palermo, 26 January 1979), Marco Luchetta, Alessandro “Sasa” Ota and Dario D’Angelo (Mostar, 28 January 1994). Ossigeno has remembered them by supplementing the documentation on each of them with new testimonies in “They sought the  truth” at

Whilst in February, Ossigeno remembered the TG2 news programme’s cameraman Marcello Palmisano, adding to the web site the memory that the journalist Mauro Montali published in l’Unità the day after the killing.

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