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Rosa Scafa, Italy's first female police officer, dies at 98

Rosa Scafa served from 1952 until 1985.

Italian premier Giorgia Meloni on Tuesday led tributes to Rosa Scafa, Italy's first female police officer, who died on Monday at the age of 98.

"Thank you for having served Italy with honour and dedication", Meloni wrote on social media, recalling the pride with which Scafa wore her police uniform for more than three decades.

Scafa joined the civil police in Trieste in 1952, before serving in the state police from 1981 until 1985, for a total of 33 years in the force.

In an interview a few years ago Scafa admitted that she initially enrolled in the police to escape poverty in post-war Italy.

However she said she immediately became passionate about her work, much of which involved dealing with crimes committed or suffered by women and minors.

In 2010 she received an award on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the entry of women into the Italian police.

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