The Report took note of the progress made by Italy after 2006, when the preceding ECRI Report was drafted. The adoption of anti-racial discrimination provisions in criminal and civil law and the establishment of the UNITAR (National Anti-racial Discrimination Office) are examples. On the other hand, the ECRI noted the use of racist and xenophobic discourse in politics and the media; the ill treatment of foreigners and, most particularly, of Roma, which derived from the application of so called “pacchetto sicurezza” (legislative decree No. 92 of 2008) and of other norms targeting foreigners; the introduction by national authorities of the policy of returning to their country of origin any boats intercepted on the open sea between Italy and Libya, which appears to have led to the refoulement of persons in need of protection and, possibly, to breaches of the rights of refugees and asylum seekers.
Judgment of the European Court of Human Rights, Grand Chamber, 23 February 2012, Hirsi Jamaa and Others v. Italy