Rome police disperse protest rally with tear gas (PHOTOS)Protesters clash with anti riot-police during a demonstration to ask for affordable housings and against Government's austerity measures on October 31, 2013 in downtown Rome. (AFP Photo/Filippo Monteforte)
Police have used tear gas against protesters as hundreds marched through central Rome demanding better housing policies. The rally turned violent when demonstrators started throwing eggs, smoke bombs and bottles at law enforcers.
Demonstrators also attacked an armored vehicle and attempted to break police barricade, as police pushed back activists on their way to the regional affairs ministry.
At least six people, including four police officers, were hospitalized with injuries and about a dozen received medical help on the site, reports Italian La Stampa daily. Several protesters were detained.
Police blocked several streets and closed shops in the area where clashes erupted.
The rally on Thursday was organized by activists from the movement ‘For Housing’ who are demanding that local authorities stop evictions in Rome and use more public funds to help people without homes or those who cannot pay their rent.
The demonstration coincided with the meeting of representatives from the government, regional authorities and City Hall, who gathered to discuss an emergency plan to tackle the lack of affordable housing.
Mayor of Rome, Ignazio Marino, should be “banging his fists” on the table demanding more housing for the poor, one of protesters said, as cited by AP.
The mayor “has to ask with determination for an end to the evictions of those who can't pay (their rent)," added Paolo Di Vetta from the "Living in the Crisis" Association.
Similar protests against evictions have taken place in many cities across Italy.