Rome, once the place for drunken bacchanalia, officially lost all of it’s former glory. This cultural capital of the world introduced a prohibition for 3 days (Wednesday to Friday) in the city centre. Bars, restaurants and bistro’s are not allowed to sell any alcohol. And the reason? The local authorities are scared to death for a few thousand Dutch football fans. Not only did they cut off the old town from booze, yesterday evening the Roman police also acted agressively with excessive violence. Our holiday tip for this year: anywhere but the Italian capital.
Almost 6.000 supporters of the Dutch footballclub Feyenoord are in town for a European cupmatch against AS Roma. Like most football fans the boys from Rotterdam aren’t afraid of a few drinks. That showed for example in some banners they carry along and the fact that the alcohol prices in different countries is a major factor to decide if they had a ‘good draw’ in Europe.
Wednesday evening a small fight broke out between two groups of Feyenoord fans, something that happens in bars all over the world. However, the Italian police reacted with extreme force and swept the square ‘clean’ with their bats, chasing people in the Roman streets and alleys to satisfy their desire to hurt people even more. Makes you wonder who the real hooligans are here. On top of all 23 Dutch victims from police violence were arrested. So much for Italian hospitality.
To make matters worse the Roman authorities prohibited all alcohol sales in the city centre. With that not just punishing the football fans but also the many tourists that paid good money to visit this city. A dry Rome? Guess emperor Tiberius just rolled over in his grave to escape the shame.