Rome riot damage should be paid for by Dutch government: senate
The Dutch senate says the Netherlands should make a contribution to the fountain in Rome damaged by rioting Feyenoord fans last week.
The newly-restored 17th century Barcaccia fountain close to the Spanish Steps was damaged during riots ahead of the Rotterdam football club’s away match with AS Roma in the Europa League.
However, the damage caused to the fountain will cost less than EUR 10,000 to repair, Rome official Giovanna Marinelli told NRC.next on Tuesday.
Although the government supports the private online collections for money towards the restoration of Bernini’s fountain, the senate thinks the more is needed.
Paying for the restoration from state funds would be seen as ‘a call to decency to the whole of the Netherlands’. Labour senator Marleen Barth is quoted as saying by broadcaster Nos.
‘I do not think we want the world to see us in the light of ignoring this damage.’
The senate does not normally get involved in these kind of situations, but is putting pressure on the government in this case.
Roger van Boxtel of the left-wing liberals D66, told the Nos: ‘We think a gesture from the government, in this exceptional case, should be made.’
In the meantime, an offer to restore the Barcaccia fountain free of charge has been made by restoration firm Koninklijke Woudenberg, Trouw reports.
The company, which has undertaken restoration work in the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam and the Mauritshuis in The Hague, says it is confident it can restore the marble fountain.
The offer has been sent to the authorities in Rome, but the company has not yet received an answer, Trouw says.
The total damage caused by the riots is likely to be in the region of EUR 150,000 to EUR 200,000, Rome officials said.