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Penalty increase for Holocaust denial


On June 8, 2016 the Italian Parliament approved an amendment which increased the penalty for Holocaust denial.

The amendment was to Article 3 of Law n.654 of October 13, 1975 on the subject of combatting and suppressing crimes of genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes, as defined by Articles 6, 7 and 8 of Statute of the International Criminal Court.The amendment obtained an increase of the penalties imposed by the old legislation for the promotion of ideas based on racial supremacy or hatred, for the incitement to acts of discrimination or for the incitement to commit or the same committing acts of violence for racial, ethnic, national or religious reasons.

Although national legislation already prohibited any organization, association, movement or group with such purposes, the amendment established an increase in the penalty in case the promotion and public incitement are based - totally or partially-  on Holocaust denial or crimes of genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes.

The Italian delegation to the IHRA considers the change in their legislation to be a significant achievement which both reflects awareness of the expanding danger of Holocaust denial and underscores the risks entailed by that phenomenon.