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G8 police chiefs lose jobs

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Police lead away a man injured in the riots in Genoa  


ROME, Italy -- Three senior police chiefs have been removed from their posts following last month's violent protests at the G8 summit in Genoa.

The Associated Press said the decision was announced in a statement late on Thursday by Interior Minister Claudio Scajola.

The officers reassigned from their posts are Ansoino Andreassi, the deputy chief of police in charge of the G8, Arnaldo La Barbera, head of the anti-terrorism department, and Francesco Colucci, police superintendent of Genoa, AP said.

A 23-year-old demonstrator was shot and killed by police during the riots during the July 20-22 summit, with more than 200 people injured and 280 people arrested.

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CNN's Alessio Vinci reports on the violence that occurred during the G8 summit in Italy (August 2)

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There was criticism at home and abroad about the way police handled the protests, with some protesters claiming they were beaten up by police.

Police faced particular criticism over a pre-dawn raid on a school housing demonstrators.

The allegations of police brutality from officials and demonstrators in Germany, Britain and other European countries embarrassed Premier Silvio Berlusconi's new government.

There were Italian opposition calls for Scajola's own resignation, but the minister easily survived a Senate vote of confidence on Wednesday.

The Interior Ministry and police are conducting internal investigations into the way the protests in Genoa were handled and the lower house of Parliament on Tuesday agreed to appoint a fact-finding commission.

The decision to reassign the three police chiefs was met with scepticism by some of the leaders of the more than 100,000 people who converged on the Genoa summit.

"If these are measures to show, as everyone knows, that the management of the so-called law enforcement forces in Genoa was worrisome, then fine," Luca Canarini, spokesman for the White Overalls anti-globalisation group told AP.

"But if this just serves to save the conscience of the minister, Claudio Scajola, of the government and of the G8, then it doesn't mean anything."






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