The most beautiful moment of this Sunday just passed is enclosed in that image: a long and deep embrace. The one between a mother and a daughter. But insults and controversies were not lacking and this causes sadness. In an Italy that is dealing with a health emergency like the one we are experiencing, and where there should only be hope and solidarity, the haters have not been lacking. The facts are these: yesterday at Ciampino airport, a flight from the secret services for external security landed in the early afternoon, which brought Silvia Romano, the Italian aid worker kidnapped in Kenya, to Italy.
Her family and her mother are waiting for her. That on the day dedicated to Mother’s Day had the most beautiful gift. Hugging her daughter after the long distance. An image that soon made the rounds of the web and which contains the hope of a life that begins again. The President of the Council Giuseppe Conte and the Foreign Minister Luigi Di Maio also welcomed her to Ciampino. But there was no lack of controversy, especially on social media. Silvia Romano is now at home and they are moments of joy for her city, but also of investigations into her kidnapping.
Silvia Romano, the controversy over the ransom
Unfortunately, 535 days of imprisonment between Kenya and Somalia were not enough to allay the controversy. As often happens in Italy and in this period of suffering above all, attacks on Silvia Romano were not lacking, as had already happened over a year ago. From sexist controversies to those who said that the money for the ransom, if paid, was to be used for the emergency. Or even those who said they could commit their solidarity in Italy. Journalist Enrico Mentana left a comment on social media against these attacks. One way to dissociate from someone behind a keyboard and often leaves room for hateful words. Faced with the news of the release of the 25-year-old who cheered everyone up and gave hope, the controversy becomes only a pretext for discussion. And now it doesn’t count.
Silvia is at home, what we know about captivity and conversion
From now on, investigators try to reconstruct these long months of captivity. What struck him upon his arrival in Ciampino was not only his big smile but also the suit he wore. A typical Islamic dress. In fact, Silvia Romano herself confirmed the conversion to the Islamic religion during the months of captivity. Also to have changed the name to Aisha. “It’s true, I converted to Islam: it was my free choice – she explained to the magistrates during hrs hearing -. It happened mid-captivity, when I asked to read the Qur’an and I was satisfied.”
The conversion therefore during the captivity in Somalia. A decision after the first Kenyan kidnappers surrendered to the Islamic group Al Shabab. No compulsion would have occurred on the part of the kidnappers, explained the volunteer, “they always treated me with humanity. It is not true, however, that I was forced to marry, I had no physical constraints or violence. “
Investigations on Silvia Romano and his kidnapping
Listened to by the prosecutor of Rome’s prosecutor Sergio Colaiocco and by the anti-terrorism officers of the carabinieri Silvia she told what happened to her. “There was no marriage or relationship, only respect” also clarified the cooperator. The kidnapping on November 20, 2018. The non-profit organization Africa Milele was kidnapped in the village of Chakama, about 80 kilometers from Malindi, Kenya.
Silvia told investigators that she was treated with respect. “They assured me that I would not be killed and so it was – she added -. I moved with more than one jailer to at least four dens, which were inside apartments in the villages. I was moved frequently and always to inhabited places and in the presence of the jailers themselves. They were armed and with their faces covered, but I was always treated well and I was free to move inside the lairs, which were supervised anyway.” The operation probably managed by a gang of eight people. Then ceded to Islamist groups linked to Al Shabaab terrorists in Somalia.
And now the party in her Milan
And today the party at Casoretto, its neighborhood in Milan. The parish priest who rang the church bells to wait for her friends. Waiting for her at home amid applause, banners, billboards on the city walls, flash mobs. Many surprises among those who know it. But now no controversy, neither on his conversion, nor on his choice of volunteering. To unite people is only the desire to see her again, to hug her in a virtual festive embrace.