Alva Review-Courier -

Squatters' urban garden comes to life with pope's tacit OK


March 12, 2017

ROME (AP) — Dozens of families have started tilling the soil and planting their first crops as a squatters' gardening initiative takes root on Catholic Church-owned land with the tacit blessing of Pope Francis.

The not-entirely-legal urban garden that has sprung up on the eastern periphery of Rome is the brainchild of Omero Lauri, a longtime activist in the capital's squatting scene. In 2014, he occupied the St. Mary Major basilica for three weeks with 50 families who had been evicted from an abandoned building they had taken over.

For the past four years, Lauri and his friends have been...

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