(Adnkronos) – Salvatore is a father who asks for “truth and justice”, the father of Ambassador Luca Attanasio, brutally killed in the Democratic Republic of Congo, near Goma, on February 22 last year. A date, a hellish day “in which our life was interrupted”, admits the man with his voice broken by emotion. Today, after a year and a handful of months, to keep the life of this family going is only the strength for the three granddaughters, left without a father. The eldest of her, 5 and a half years old, still asks where her father is, “and every time it’s a wound that reopens,” admits Salvatore. The twins will turn 4 at the end of May, their second birthday without their dad blowing out the candles on the cake.
While the Adnkronos reaches him on the phone, Grandpa Salvatore is at the park with the three little ones. He pushes them on the swing, but he moves away when the words get too heavy, when the girls could understand that, behind their eyes that fill with tears, there is the story of their dad. “How do you explain to them what happened? The truth must be found also and above all for these three creatures – he says -. When they are grown up they will realize the father they have had and they will be proud of it, I am convinced. Luca was an extraordinary son and father, he believed in a better world and worked every day to change it for the better, it is no coincidence that the slogan of the association he founded, ‘Mamma Sofia’, is: ‘let’s redesign the world’. He firmly believed in it , he was a dreamer who looked beyond his nose. He had so many dreams, his strength was to believe in the dreams he had and to try to make them come true “.
Dreams that suddenly went out on a dusty and dirt road between Goma and Rutshuru. The investigation and the news tell of a kidnapping that ended badly, with three victims brutally killed: in addition to Attanasio – a young ambassador just 43 years old – the carabiniere Vittorio Iacovacci and the driver of the World Food Program (Wfp) Mustapha Milambo. “We immediately understood that the story of the kidnapping ended badly was a staging. In our opinion, certainly it is not a kidnapping, otherwise it would not have ended that way”.
“No kidnapper kills a hostage without even trying to get something in return, there are too many, too many inconsistencies. 100 meters from the place where our Luca, Iacovacci and Milambo were killed there is a check point that coincidentally that day it was empty. Out of 7 kidnapped, “only our two compatriots were killed”, in addition to the WFP driver, the others did not report even a scratch, how is it possible? “asks Salvatore today.
In recent days, the press has written about a plot – behind the ambush – by the upper echelons of the Armed Forces of the Democratic Republic of Congo (Fardc) which would involve members of the intelligence, police and civilians. A reconstruction certainly distant “from that of the kidnapping which ended badly in which we never believed, not even for a moment – the father of Luca strongly reiterates -. Now it is up to our investigators to ascertain the truth, if the press has written about it, it will surely have collected of the testimonies before doing so. We cannot say anything about what is emerging, but we can demand the truth and fight to the end for it. Without truth there is no justice, we expect our authorities to complete their work. a leap of pride on the part of our country, a country that Luca served and honored in all the offices in which he worked “.
And that today sees the investigators stopped, the investigation stalled, the lawyers of the World Food Program ready to appeal for immunity for its diplomats involved. With the arrival of Alberto Petrangeli in Kinshasa, the new ambassador of the Democratic Republic of Congo, “we hope that the investigations into Luca will find new impetus – Salvatore’s wish -. Our carabinieri dei Ros have been waiting since September last year to complete the investigations, but they are stopped because they do not have sufficient protection or the permits that allow them to operate in a serene manner in a highly dangerous territory. And so the investigations are stalled and the story of what really happened to Luca is still to be written “.
Salvatore Attanasio knows well that he will do the impossible to break the silence, to ensure that the truth comes out and justice is fulfilled. Behind Luca’s death there must be a reason, a truth. Nobody must go unpunished, the shadow that dangerously seems to project itself on the story of his son must be swept away. Those three grandchildren he pushes on the swing remind him of it, his heart reminds him of it in torment since his son’s heart stopped beating.
“We live for the truth, without truth we would not have justice – says Luca’s father, truth and justice are two concepts that he repeats with force, which always return -. We are ready to fight until the last of our days to get to the truth. on that cursed February 22, the day in which our Luca lost his life. We hope that our authorities, above all that the Italian state has a leap of pride and with a straight back will fight for this, on the one hand with the government Congolese, on the other with the World Food Program, which wants to appeal to a sort of immunity for the people of the organization under investigation, which would be nothing short of immoral for a body that defines itself as humanitarian “.
“We know that the Farnesina is at our side – go ahead Salvatore -: the Foreign Ministry is doing everything and more to be able to go ahead with the investigation into the death of our Luca. If this were not enough, we invoke the authority government maxim, we turn to Mario Draghi. If Draghi or Mattarella are to be bothered we will do it, we do not shy away from asking for truth and justice “.
The Head of State, he recalls, “we met him on the occasion of the delivery of the Grand Cross of Honor of the Order of the Star of Italy in memory of Luca: on that occasion Mattarella had spent words of praise towards my son, an example of how diplomacy must be in Italy and in the world. And Luca is certainly an example, but an example that today demands truth and justice “.
And that sees, the man denounces, the absence of Europe. “A mute and totally absent Europe – points the finger Attanasio – We are talking about the murder of two servants of the state, a founding state of Europe but which Europe forgets in such circumstances. This is for us a very serious fact. There have been questions from European Parliament on Luca’s affair, questions sent to the European Parliament that have not had any effect, have not received any answers “.
Those who have not forgotten the young ambassador, “a dreamer who looked beyond his nose”, seem to be Pope Francis, who will fly to Congo in July and will go in prayer to Goma, near the place where Luke lost his life. “Yes, we feel it and we have also met him – says Salvatore – We hope that his presence in Congo can lead to a small step forward, that he turns on a little light to prevent our son’s story from falling into oblivion. “. There is great dignity in Salvatore Attanasio’s pain, it is understood by listening to him, it is clearly understood when Luca speaks of him and of the pride of having raised a son like this. But there is also the strength and determination of a father and a grandfather ready to do anything to have what is right for him to have: truth and justice. For Luca and his family. (by Ileana Sciarra)