Man dies after setting himself on fire to halt home eviction

Wife, daughter, police officer injured in blaze in Sicilian town

Man dies after setting himself on fire to halt home eviction

Vittoria, May 21 - A 64-year-old man who set himself ablaze to prevent eviction from his home has died from his injuries, authorities said Tuesday. Giovanni Guarascio doused himself with gasoline and set himself on fire on May 14 after his home was put up for auction for 26,000 euros. The flames reached his wife and daughter, as well as a police officer who arrived at the scene in the Sicilian town of Vittoria, near Ragusa. Guarascio died in the burns unit of Catania's Cannizzaro hospital, where his wife is still being treated. "In the face of such a tragedy, there is no more time to lose. The national government needs to understand that credit collection agencies striking at thousands of families in Italy need to be suspended," Vittoria Mayor Giuseppe Nicosia said. "The city of Vittoria has opened a help desk with free legal and financial assistance and consultants to help families like Guariscio's," Nicosia said. The city's mayor said that the council intends to buy the Guariscio home to help support the family.

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