The president of Italy’s immigrant party Mousapha Mansouri said that there are at least 15,000 cases of polygamy in Italy, and has urged women to call a special helpline for female victims of violence. Mansouri and his colleagues have reported cases of men who converted to Islam with the sole aim of being able to have multiple wives. Polygamy is illegal in Italy, but imams presiding over these marriages often do not keep a paper trail to avoid prosecution. “For this reason, we are appealing to the victims – the wives – to encourage them to denounce such abuse,” Mansouri said. However, Muslim convert and director of Islam Online’s Italian website, Hamza Piccardi, told Adnkronos International that he believes Muslim immigrants who have several wives should not be penalized. “If a foreigner arrives in a European country with four wives, he should not be reported to the police,” said Piccardi.

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