• Italians Burned Mattresses To Protest Illegal Immigrants

    Residents in a northern Italian city exploded into violent protests Friday over the government’s decision to settle 101 immigrants in empty apartments.

    Demonstrators in Treviso broke into an apartment complex, pulled mattresses and flat-screen TVs into the street and burned them in a heap, Agence France Presse reports.  A red-lettered sign directed its message at city leader Maria Augusta Marrosu, reading, “Prefect Marrosu, take them home.”

    Then, protesters set up tents in front of the building and vowed to stay, with one resident claiming, “We aren’t going home until they leave – this is an invasion,” according to Corriere del Veneto.

    About 10 Italian families who privately own apartments in the building are “furious at a decision by the local authorities to move the migrants in,” The Local reported.

    “They have transformed our homes, which we paid for with our mortgages, into a refugee camp,” one resident told Corriere del Veneto.

    But Marrosu emphasized, “They are staying, because they don’t have the choice,” according to AFP. Italy’s infrastructure is strained by the massive influx of refugees from the Middle East and Africa, and the government has called on local officials to help find housing.

    Italy houses more than 80,000 asylum seekers that entered the country by crossing the Mediterranean Sea in makeshift boats. An estimated 1,800 have died during the journey this year, The Telegraph reported.

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