And, of course, we also remember magistrate BORSALLINO.
Il Globo Editorial Team
Il Globo Editorial Team
Italy on Wednesday marked the 27th anniversary of the Capaci massacre, in which anti-mafia magistrate Giovanni Falcone was killed along with his wife and three security officers.
Giovanni Falcone. (Photo: ANSA)
On May 23, 1992, Falcone was assassinated in broad daylight when a bomb exploded under the car he was travelling in.
Falcone, who was 53 when he died, spent most of his life trying to fight the mafia, spearheading the so-called “maxi trial” in Palermo in 1986-1987, which led to the conviction of 342 mobsters.
Hitmen used more than 500 kilograms of explosives in the assassination, which was ordered by mafia godfather, Toto Riina, as revenge for Falcone’s attempts to take down their syndicate.
In 2014, four members of the Sicilian mafia were sentenced to between 12 years and life in prison for their role in the attack.
Two months after Falcone was murdered, his friend and fellow anti-mafia judge Paolo Borsellino was killed by another car bomb.
The two men are national heroes who sacrificed their lives in the name of the country’s ongoing attempts to rid itself of organised crime.
Every year, Italian students travel from Civitavecchia, near Rome, to the Sicilian capital of Palermo on the Nave della Legalità (the Legality Ship) as part of an initiative to commemorate the anniversary of Falcone’s death.
Since 2002, the Ministry of Education and the Fondazione Giovanni e Francesca Falcone organise this moving event, involving thousands of students.
This year, the ship departed from Civitavecchia in the presence of Italian President Sergio Mattarella, along with other authoritative figures.
Mattarella said Falcone’s sacrifice “became the engine of the resurgence of our civilization, which gave strength to the effort to combat [the mafia] and make citizens’ duty to do their part to drain the swamps in which the mafia live even more pressing”.
Many events took place in Palermo’s streets and piazze on Wednesday, including a ceremony featuring government ministers, top judges and police officials, and relatives of the victims that was held in the courtroom where the “maxi-trial” took place.
Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte and Interior Minister Matteo Salvini took part in the ceremony.
“Today marks the anniversary of a tragedy and a day of pain,” Conte said.
“Today, we remember those who sacrificed their lives to combat the mafia.”
Mourners united under the “Falcone Tree”, on Via Notarbartolo, at 5:58 pm – the time of the attack – for a minute’s silence.