Luca Zaia, President of northern Italy's Veneto region. EPA-EFE/Riccardo Gregolin

Regional Signal

President of Veneto, Italy, supports foundation to fight femicide


Veneto, Italy

Luca Zaia, President of Veneto region has said that his region is ready to support a foundation to combat femicide.

This comes after the funeral of Giulia Cecchettin, murdered days before her graduation allegedly by her ex-boyfriend.

The murder has sparked a wave of national debate, reflection, and outrage over what many feel to be an Italian problem with misogynistic violence.

Giula’s father is reported as wanting to establish a foundation in his daughter’s name, to combat gender-based violence.

“We haven’t discussed it yet, but we’re in,” announced President Zaia when it was mentioned to him at a press conference on December 12, at Palazzo Balbi, the seat of the regional government.

“Giulia should not be just another victim” of femicide he said.

“Giulia represents a big bang in history, and big bangs should not be underestimated”.

Giulia Cecchetin was found dead, her throat slit, in a remote area of the Alpine foothills on November 18. Up to ten thousand mourners gather outside of Santa Giustina cathedral in the city of Padua, ringing bells and shaking keys to “make noise” against such violence.

Giulia’s father, Gino Cecchetin, addressed the mourners, calling to on them to break the cycle of violence. He called on men to be proactive agents of change, urging them to listen to women and not ignore signs of violence.

Gino Cecchetin remembered Giulia as an “extraordinary young woman” who, despite personal challenges, excelled academically and will posthumously receive a degree in bioengineering from the University of Padua.

“Femicide often results from a culture that devalues the lives of women, victims of those that should have loved them. Instead, they were harassed, forced into long periods of abuse until they completely lose their liberty, before they also lose their lives,’’ Gino Cecchetin said.

Zaia, present at the funeral, said that schools should teach the Giulia’s eulogy.

Speaking at the later press conference he also highlighted more positive developments.

“There is an awareness in the community that wasn’t there before. I remind you that young people are not the main culprits of femicide in this country. Today, we learned the story of two young people, but it’s not always like that.”

For the governor, the new generations “are exceptional; we often focus only on the falling tree… But it is also true that there is a forest growing, which is never talked about, and that is the 8,000 young people inside and outside the church on the day of the funeral, who were there to express their stance against gender-based violence.”