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Italian ex-militant arrested in Bolivia

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BOLIVIA
A former communist militant who Brazil’s new president had vowed to extradite has been detained in Bolivia, a Brazilian official said.
Italian Cesare Battisti is wanted for four murders in Italy during the 1970s, which he denies committing.
Battisti spent years in Brazil as a refugee, backed by former left-wing President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva.
But far-right President Jair Bolsonaro, who took office on 1 January, had pledged to send him back to Italy.
Filipe Martins, a senior aide on international affairs to President Bolsonaro, tweeted that Battisti “will be soon brought to Brazil, from where he will probably be sent to Italy to serve a life sentence”.
Brazilian politician Eduardo Bolsonaro, one of the president’s sons, tweeted to Italy’s interior minister Matteo Salvini: “Brazil is no longer a land of bandits. The “little gift” is coming.”
An arrest warrant had been issued for Battisti in December, when Brazil’s former President Michel Temer revoked his status as a permanent resident.
The 64-year-old went on the run, and both his lawyer and the police told the BBC they had no idea of his whereabouts.
Battisti, who has a five-year-old Brazilian son, told AFP last year he would face “torture” and death if he returned to Italy.
He was arrested by a special Interpol team formed by Italian investigators, Italian paper Corriere della Sera reports. He was wearing sunglasses and a fake beard at the time of his capture, the paper said.
In December, Brazil’s Federal Police had released a picture showing possible disguises that Battisti might use.



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