Scientology VMs 'appropriated' the tents of the Italian civil protection


Scientology's doublecross

Scientology VMs "appropriated" the tents of the Italian civil protection

Translated by italian SP from italian text originally on

"Sri Lanka: Scientology ascribes to itself the merits of Italian aids"

The Civil Protecion: they "appropriated" of our tents

Corriere della Sera, 18.1.2005
From our correspondant

Galle (Sri Lanka) - "I couldn't believe my own ears: that italian woman, who said to be of Scientology - organization that I don't know - asserted in front of the mayor of Galle that the tent camp lodging the evacuated was their work. What?! Actually it was the result of the efforts of the Italian Civil Protection… I pointed that out with the chief of the cingalese opposition, Ranil, with whom I was doing the round of the devastaded areas".

This is the beginning of the report of Mrs. Franca Nieri, from Tuscany, owner of a shoe factory in the cingalese capital and president of the Business Council Italia - Sri Lanka. "A blatant impropriety, that of Scientology: trying to appropriate of the assistance work that the Department of the Prime Minister is doing in that area" said filled with indignation Marco Agnoloni, chief of the Italian Civil Protection in south Sri Lanka.

"I've been maintaining for years that when a disaster occurs we see a humanitarian Barnum circus. Exploiters with the best intentions and mythomaniacal, not always harmless: we had to expect it also here. Now also Scientology, it's all we needed: they're free to help their way, as long as they do not hinder our operations and, above all, they do not take merits they do no have" snorts irritated and tired Agostino Miozzo, the chief of the Italian mission.

The controvery exploded yesterday but it has been smouldering for days. An unpleasant controversy, seven thousands kilometers from Italy and 116 from che capital of Sri Lanka, in one of the most devastated cities of the tsunami that caused more than 38.000 victims and 700.000 homeless. Focus of it, the alleged dirty play of a Turin representative of the controversial religious group founded by the american writer L. Ron Hubbard and often involved in judicial investigations. The accusation is the attempt to put the Scientology hat on the activities of our Civil Protection.

"We arrived here to rescue our compatriots on Dec. 28th" remembers Marco Agnoloni. "The 30th our advanced medical spot started to operate and it has examined 3000 people so far. The 31st we started to pitch our tents, now lodging a thousand, Catholics, Buddhists, Hindu and Muslims alike."

Around the end of the year, however, three people from Turin arrived, two men and a woman. The first wear a uniform similar to the Civil Protection and let people believe to be part of it. Infact they were part of it as members of the National Association of Alpines. "But when we are in a catastrophe area" explains Roberto Farina, in charge of the communications for the Department "we are not here as Civil Protection for a personal interest. Everyone must be organized with a specific mandate. As far as we are concerned, those two men are unknown".

The woman, openly of Scientology, gets to become the "secretary" of the mayor of Galle, Mohamad Ariff. "And that… ok - said Mozzo - problems start when…" when on Sunday 16th, in a meeting in the City Hall with the local reporters and in the presence of the chief of the opposition Ranil Wickremesinghe, of a number of foreign Scientology adepts, of the two self-styled Civil Protection workers and of Mrs. Franca, the Scientology representative implies that the blue tents camp is the work of her "church".

"To us it was like a slap in the face" smiles bitterly Roberto Fedeli, MD. "What? We arrived here a few hours after the catastrophe to bring help with the money Italian people donated, and then an unknown woman arrives and tries to take merits that are not hers."

Yesterday there was a consultation at our Embassy. Nobody wants to go to war with Scientology, to avoid giving it much importance. On its website the "church" declares to "have helped pitching tents donated by the Italian government". A claim denied by the Civil Protection. In the evening they decide to write a letter to the mayor of Galle. The heading is the Presidency of the Ministry Board [i.e. office of the Prime Minister], it is signed by Agostino Miozzo and reads:

"Dear Mr. Ariff, I inform you that the Civil Protection Team of the Italian government working in the district of Galle is represented by Roberto Fedeli and Marco Agnoloni. To avoid unpleasant misunderstandings, I inform you that we do not acknoledge any other person who's cooperating with you, and declares to be part of the Italian Civil Protection".

Costantino Muscau


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