Thousands of left-wing students hurling molotov cocktails, ball bearings and stones clashed with riot police in Rome on Tuesday (December 12) in a three-hour battle marking the third anniversary of Italy's worst postwar terrorist bombing.
GV PAN Molotov cocktails burning in street
SV Men moving car away from fire
SV Riot police move in
SV Explosions and people running
SV Riot police in line
SV Police make arrests
SV Police helping injured man to car
Initials ESP/1645 ESP/1653
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Background: Thousands of left-wing students hurling molotov cocktails, ball bearings and stones clashed with riot police in Rome on Tuesday (December 12) in a three-hour battle marking the third anniversary of Italy's worst postwar terrorist bombing.
The demonstrators were marking the anniversary of the 1969 Milan terrorist attack in which 16 people were killed. They were also demanding the release of an anarchist, Pietro Valpreda, who has been in jail for three years without trail on charges of causing the massacre.
The anarchists were originally blamed for the outrage, but in the three years since 1969 evidence has come to light suggesting that neo-Fascist and extreme right-wing elements were involved.
The trouble on Tuesday began when 10,000 marchers disagreed with police about the route they were to follow through the centre of Rome. So they leapt over barricades set up by riot police, - sparking off a series of clashes on both sides of the Rover Tiber.
The riots left a dozen police and an unknown number of demonstrators injured. Police said they arrested nearly forty people.
Hundreds of molotov cocktails were thrown in the tumult, setting alight a police bus and several cars.
SYNOPSIS: In Rome, hundreds of molotov cocktails were thrown on Tuesday during a three-hour battle between left-wing students and riot police.
The owner of this car was lucky. But a police but and several other cars were set ablaze in the rioting. The trouble started when ten thousand marchers disagreed with police over the route they should take through the city.
Exploding petrol bombs injured several policemen. The demonstrators were marking the anniversary of Italy's worst post-war terrorist bombing - in which sixteen people were killed in Milan three years ago.
Altogether, police arrested nearly forty people during the clashes, which spread to both sides of the River Tiber... the river running through the centre of Rome. At least 12 policemen and an unknown number of demonstrators were injured.