Religion: Italy leads battle for the Holy Cross
1 July 2010
The European Court of Human Rights has begun debating Italy's appeal against its ruling that the display of crucifixes in public places constitutes "a violation of religious freedom". The court's 2009 decision angered the Vatican and Catholics all over Europe, remembers La Stampa. Now, the Turin daily reports, thanks to an "immense" diplomatic effort, the Italian government has managed to organize a front of ten Council of Europe member states, including Russia, Romania and Bulgaria, which support its claim that the crucifix is a "symbol of national identity".