WATCH | Chaos erupts in Italian parliament over Green Passes

Chaotic scenes in the Italian parliament have gone viral today as MPs protested against new rules introduced by Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi – which will make access to a range of facilities like stadiums, cinemas, and gyms contingent on presentation of a coronavirus “green pass”.

In the footage, numerous MPs are seen crowding into the bottom of the parliament chamber holding signs reading “no green pass” after a fellow member is chased out of the area by parliamentary security.

Many found the footage amusing, with some requesting that the opening chase be dubbed over with the famous theme from the Benny Hill Show.

“Pace on the lad running away, the Italian rugby team could do with him on the wing” joked another Twitter user.

Green passes will be available to Italian citizens who have had at least one dose of coronavirus vaccine, but the move has been controversial among many who see it as a threat to civil liberties.

Growing opposition to the Draghi government appears to have benefited the right-wing Brothers of Italy party, who have overtaken Matteo Salvini’s popular Lega party in recent polls.

They have topped or drawn even in thirteen national polls since June, including four out of the last five opinion surveys, suggesting growing competition for voters on the populist right ahead of elections that will occur no later than June 2023.

The chaotic scenes underline the growing tensions over continuing coronavirus restrictions and attempts to link traditional personal freedoms to vaccine status, with huge crowds gathering in France this weekend to protest against similar proposals from Emmanuel Macron which could see French citizens refused access to restaurants if they don’t get the jab.

In footage from the streets of Paris, anti-Macron protesters are seen being manhandled by police while others are hit with tear gas, batons, and shields – while those who remain were hosed down with powerful water cannons.