In a striking display of political activism, demonstrators infiltrated Italy’s iconic Leaning Tower of Pisa, unfurling a Palestinian flag from the venerable 14th-century edifice. This action was part of a wave of student-led demonstrations sweeping across Italy.
The event at the Leaning Tower, a UNESCO World Heritage site, saw around 15 protestors deviating from the sanctioned march path, confronting law enforcement with bottles and other projectiles. The activists managed to evade site personnel and ascend the tower, where they deployed smoke flares and showcased the Palestinian flag.
The student group organizing the demonstration called for an end to hostilities and advocated for Palestinian sovereignty, criticizing what they referred to as a 75-year Israeli occupation. They also condemned the Italian government’s arms transactions with Israel.
Law enforcement officials are reviewing video evidence to identify the trespassers. Charges may be pursued contingent on whether the Opera della Primaziale Pisana, which oversees the historic Piazza dei Miracoli, opts to take legal action.
Simultaneously, in Florence, protestors enveloped Brunelleschi’s renowned cathedral, barring tourists and draping banners with slogans criticizing the admittance of beauty amidst conflict. In Milan, demonstrators marked bank and retail shop fronts with red paint, while in Bologna, images of Israeli and Italian leaders were set ablaze in protest. The Union of University Students reported anti-Israel demonstrations in over 40 Italian cities.