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Italian Student Protests Erupt in Several Cities

- Common Dreams staff

Thousands of students clashed with riot police Friday in protest of deep cuts to education. "Save schools, not banks," students chanted referencing the government's austerity measures which, they say, are destroying their chances of getting a good education and valuable work.

Italian riot police detain demonstrators during a student protest in Turin, Italy, on Oct. 5. Photo by Alessandro Di Marco / EPA Young people gathered in cities up and down Italy and protests turned violent in Milan, Turin, and Rome—where police said several officers were injured. Footage of the protests shows police in riot gear charging into walls of students.

Student protestor Matteo told Euronews:

“We take to the streets not only to say that we reject these austerity politics, but also to bring to the public’s attention the problems of our education system, to remind people that schools are an important part of society and we can’t do without them,” he said.

Friday's protest was the latest in a recent string of incidents denouncing Prime Minister Mario Monti's economic reforms. Young people have bore the brunt of the country's downturn, where one in three Italian youth are jobless.

"We are worried about our prospects and about the future of our country," student Madalina Ursu told Reuters.