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Sep 13, 1:25 PM EDT

Clashes erupt over migrant center outside Rome

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ROME (AP) -- Clashes have broken out over the presence of a migrant center in Rome's outskirts in the latest sign of increasing tensions over the influx of migrants in Italian cities.

The fascist Casapound movement was attending a municipal council meeting Wednesday over neighborhood tensions caused by the presence of about 80 African migrants at a shelter. Casapound wants to close the center.

Leftist activists, some carrying signs reading "Enough Racism," besieged the building where the meeting was supposed to have taken place, forcing it to be canceled.

Police in anti-riot gear tried to keep the two groups apart, but at one point several leftists broke through police lines and clashed briefly with the Casapound militants.

Anti-immigrant sentiment is on the rise in much of Italy over the presence of migrants.

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