A woman cries as she stands with others on the roof of an abandoned school before being evicted, on the outskirts of Rome, Monday, July 15, 2019. Residents set fire early Monday to mattresses and other garbage to form a barrier and prevent riot police from entering the building but authorities doused the blaze and proceeded with the eviction. (Massimo Percossi/ANSA via AP)

Rome police evict Italian, migrant squatters from ex-school

July 15, 2019 - 7:35 am

ROME (AP) — Italian police have evicted migrants and others from an abandoned former school on Rome's outskirts in the latest operation to empty occupied buildings of migrants and squatters.

Residents set fire early Monday to mattresses and other garbage to form a barrier and prevent riot police from entering the building. But authorities doused the blaze and proceeded with the eviction.

Interior Minister Matteo Salvini, who has championed a crackdown on migrants, said Italy had "no tolerance" for anyone who illegally occupies abandoned buildings. He said the structure was dangerous and put women and children living there at risk.

City hall officials said they were providing alternative housing for the nearly 200 people affected.

Rome has a long history of squatters, with Italians and migrants alike lamenting a lack of affordable housing.

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