Italy has begun taking fingerprints from members of its Gypsy minority, in what the government calls a “census” of the people living in nomad encampments. The plans to document adults and children lacking an EU passport has brought condemnations from critics, who charge that “census” is the Berlusconi government’s euphemism for a racist practice, the BBC reports.
"We intend…to see who lives in Gypsy camps, who has a right to stay,” said the interior minister, who said the move will help fight crime and improve living conditions. Italy performs a complete census every 10 years in which individuals are not fingerprinted. The EU parliament will review the issue next week.