Free Trieste


August 12th, 2011

On July 28th, 2011 the European Commission confirmed a new an investigation about environmental pollution in Trieste, about the recent suspension of the free zone in the Northern Free Port of Trieste, and about human rights in the Free Territory of Trieste – FTT. The Commission answered to my comprehensive complaint on July 11th, 2011. I presented it as a citizen of the Free Territory of Trieste (independent since 1947).

The reasons of my appeal:

I’ve been investigating pollution in the area since 1997, as a representative of Non-Government Organizations (currently Alpe Adria Green and Greenaction Transnational). It’s not been easy getting fellow citizens to participate in environment-related actions.

My investigations cover also the misuse of EU funding, especially in projects “for touristic development”. I did also investigate the tendering of public works, especially those to cover in concrete the coast of Trieste. At the same time, I worked to have the safety measures in industrial power plants released. Currently I am involved in the opposition to LNG terminals in the gulf of Trieste. Without forgetting the defense of Trieste’s Northern Free Port.

Local politicians call do even call it “porto vecchio” as in “old port” because, surprisingly, to them old = useless. All of this to promote an  illegal building speculation in that area. 

Local Courts have often open proceedings related to my investigations: the findings are that there is a local “establishment” built on the systematic breach of Italian and European laws.

However, soon I had to face the harsh truth: even in the judiciary there are representatives of the local system of corruption. My cases were dismissed, often without investigations. At the same time, for denouncing to public opinion and to the judiciary those illegal actions, I suffered alarming threats, legal persecutions, and the violation of my very civil rights.

What I reported so far to EU authorities:

Since locally there was no way out, I decided to seek justice before European authorities.

About the environment:

I denounced the environmental disaster in Trieste and in its province, as well as the repressive actions of the Italian judiciary I suffered in retaliation for denouncing to public opinion decades of dramatic pollution, the related interests of the State, and also for opposing the aforementioned local establishment. In the past 57 years of Italian administration, it is this institutionalized system of corruption that polluted this territory, and carried out illegal traffics.

A detailed description of its illegal activities is summarized in dossier “D for dumping grounds – Operation Attila and the devastation of the Free Territory of Trieste: organization and execution of a State crime”.

About the international Free Port:

This environmental disaster does also affect the international Free Port of Trieste, because one of the goals of the local establishment’s operations is to downgrade it for the sake of Italian Ports. This negative turn of events made the former first port of Austria-Hungary and its precious free zone barren, despite having a legal status worth massive trade and traffics: the perfect site for a dangerous, polluting oil terminal.

This ill fate did not spare the Port of Trieste: like the city and its territory, it became a crossing point for hazardous waste, a lawless zone for the most dangerous trades, including some labeled as Secret of State. The annihilation of this defeated land came with coastal and marine landfills.

The final phase the Port of Trieste’s destruction is the attempt to turn the Northern Free Port in an urban area, with a massive, building speculation, worth at least EUR 2 billion.

Houses, Hotels, recreational yacht basins, stores, casinos. A new Monte Carlo of the Balkans, this is the future the local establishment envisions for the city-port of Trieste: a perfect city for the Italian mafias.

The first step in this disruption is the suspension of the Free Zone regime in the Northern Free Port. It was the Commissar of the Government to order it, illegally: no authority can suspend a permanent free zone bound under international law. This was as well included in the complaint to European authorities.

This long tradition of unlawfulness caused damages and losses to this small territory: approximately EUR 100 billion, ranging from environmental pollution to the downgrading of the international Free Port suppressing and diverting its commercial traffics.

About the rights of the Free Territory of Trieste:

All that I reported happened in the province of Trieste: under the 1947 Italian Peace Treaty, this area is the Free Territory of Trieste – FTT. This is why I presented my legal actions on behalf of my organizations as European and Triestine. I want to protect the environment and the interests of my community: Italy is endangering them despite being a EU Member States and despite its Government being currently sub-entrusted with Trieste’s temporary civil administration. An administration that envisions special protection for the international Free Port.

My request to the EU:

That the European Commission, as for its role or guarantor of the Charter of Fundamental Rights and of other International Treaties, ensures that Italy complies with International and European Law also in Trieste-FTT;

As European and Triestine citizen, I requested compliance with my fundamental rights, because so far the Italian judiciary failed to do. I appealed to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, fully embraced by the EU;

That the European Commission informs the UN about the Italian authority’s unilateral suspension of the free port regime, and of the decision, in breach of the 1947 Treaty of Peace, to use the Northern Free Port for activities that are far outside the legal status it has.

Translated from blog “Environment and Legality” by Roberto Giurastante