Brazil grants resident visa to convicted Italian terrorist
The Brazilian government Wednesday granted a resident visa to a convicted Italian terrorist who escaped Italian jail in 1981, dpa reported.
The suspect, Cesare Battisti, was a founding member of Armed Proletarians for Communism. In 1993, an Italian court convicted him in absentia of four murders committed in the 1970s and related to his political views. Battisti has denied committing the murders.
Battisti, 56, had been held since 2007 in a Brazilian prison awaiting a decision on Italy's request for extradition.
Former Brazilian president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva refused extradition on his last day in office, on December 31, 2010, and the Supreme Court has since upheld his decision. Battisti was released from prison on June 8.
The case has raised diplomatic friction with Rome, and the Italian government said it would appeal the decision with the International Court of Justice.
Battisti escaped from an Italian prison in 1981 while being detained on suspicion of being a member of an armed group. He spent time in Mexico and France.
In France, he was shielded by the Mitterrand doctrine, which restricted the extradition of left-wing Italian militants to Italy, but fled again when there was a change of policy.
In 2004, he went to Brazil, where he was detained in 2007 pending the extradition decision.