Protesters have pelted riot police with fireworks during demonstrations against new coronavirus restrictions.
At least a month of new restrictions have been imposed across Italy to fight rising coronavirus infections, starting on Monday and lasting until November 24.
On Saturday night, far-right and neo-fascist political groups protested in Rome against an overnight curfew.
Riot police have been pelted with fireworks during demonstrations against new coronavirus restrictions in Rome
Far-right and neo-fascist political groups protested against an overnight curfew which will start on Monday and be in place until November 24
Demonstrators clashed with the police in Naples on Friday while they were protesting a 11pm to 5am curfew.
Several Italian regions and cities recently slapped on these curfews to cut down on young people congregating outdoors, especially to drink.
Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte has set early curfews for bars, cafes and restaurants and has insisted on people wearing masks outdoors.
Restaurant and bar owners had lobbied hard against the new measures, which order them to close at 6pm daily.
Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte (pictured) has set early curfews for bars, cafes and restaurants and has insisted on people wearing masks outdoors
Most restaurants in Italy usually do not even start to serve dinner before 8pm so the restriction seriously cuts into revenues.
Cafes and restaurants were allowed to reopen in recent months after the spring lockdown for outdoor dining or limited indoor seating.
‘Our aim is to protect health and the economy,’ Mr Conte said on Sunday.
A day earlier, Italy passed the half-million mark in the number of confirmed coronavirus cases since February.
This was when it became the first country to be stricken by the virus in Europe, and daily new caseloads have crept close to 20,000 in the last two days.
Several Italian regions and cities recently slapped on these curfews to cut down on young people congregating outdoors resulting in clashes with riot police
Mr Conte promised financial aid from his centre-left government as soon as November to the food sector.
He noted cafes and restaurants can do delivery and takeaway orders until midnight.
No more than four diners will be allowed per restaurant table before the curfew unless they are from the same family.
Under new rules, ski slopes are off-limits to all but competitive skiers and all spectators are banned from stadiums during professional sports matches, including football.
Receptions after religious or civil ceremonies like weddings are forbidden.
Riot police run towards a red firework which has been set off during protests about the curfews which have been met by much resistance
Italian police patrol the streets after protests against lockdown restrictions after the country passed the half-million mark in the number of confirmed coronavirus cases since February
The decree continues to exempt children younger than six and those exercising outdoors from wearing masks.
‘We all have to do small sacrifices,’ Mr Conte said.
Cinemas, gyms and pools have closed, and he added: ‘If we can’t go to the gym, we can exercise outdoors.’
Mr Conte kept elementary and middle schools open but said 75 per cent of high school pupils must have remote classes.
Crowding on public transport, especially since schools reopened last month, has concerned health authorities.
By early summer, after Italy’s lockdown was all but lifted, new virus caseloads had dropped to as low as 200 a day.
Members of a far-right group clash with police in the Piazza Del Popolo in Rome during the protests at the prospect of new restrictions
Mr Conte said he understands the frustration of citizens, whose incomes and way of life are being heavily hit by pandemic limitations (pictured, man holding an Italian flag during a protest)
‘We did it then, we can do it now,’ Mr Conte said, warning that without any vaccine available ‘it’s not like we’ll all be able to hug each other’ during the holidays.
Mr Conte said he understands the frustration of citizens, whose incomes and way of life are being heavily hit by pandemic limitations.
‘I’d feel anger, too, towards the government,’ he said, but noted authorities had determined protests have also been fuelled by agitators.
Since early in the pandemic, masks have been required on Italy’s public transport and in indoor venues like supermarkets and other stores.