«Total chaos!» At midnight on 30th March 2010, this text message was sent from one of the detainees inside Ponte Galeria, the immigration prison in Rome, Italy.
An hour prior to the text, a riot inside the detention centre had started: mattresses were burnt and two huge fires reached the infirmary. Some of the detainees were on the roof, while others broke three or four doors and reached the outer fence. The detention centre was soon full of riot police. Gunshots were heard around 1.20am.
There riot has allegedly caused EUR 200,000 worth of damage; a hydraulic and electric system was put out of order; four people escaped and an unknown number of detainees were moved to other detention centres, while 17 were arrested. They are due in court on 31st March.
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