A demonstration of approximately 40,000 protestors hit the streets of Bologna, Italy on Sunday, January 19. Responding to the call of the “Sardines,” a movement started in November 2019, the rally was held to oppose politician Matteo Salvini, a leading member of Italy’s previous coalition government, and his anti-immigration policies.

The Sardines movement is a response to the growing strength in the north of the right-wing coalition led by Salvini’s League party, and gets its name from the term “packed like sardines”.

Sunday’s rally also heard a loud chorus of Bella ciao, the Italian protest folk song that was adopted as an anti-fascist anthem by members of the Italian Resistance during World War II. The song has since resonated with protestors opposing oppressive regimes globally.

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