This appeared in my box this a.m. courtesy of Martin Bemmann:

An initiative undertaken in the past few days by the Italian Government is aimed at closing down the Istituto Italiano per l'Africa e l'Oriente (IsIAO). To avoid such an eventuality, which would spell the end of an institution that is unique in Italy and which has been active at the international level in the fields of archaeology, restoration and conservation of cultural assets, scientific research and publishing for over 100 years, we are launching the on-line subscription to an open letter addressed to the President of the Republic. This letter will be available on-line by Tuesday 24 June on the web site

We hereby invite you to kindly sign (name, surname, university/institution, country) this petition and also to ask your colleagues to do likewise.

Some press coverage (in Italian pdf) is available ...