ROME, Italy — The Italian government’s mandate of a vaccine “Green Pass” to access cultural sites went into effect Friday, throwing the city of Rome into pandemonium.

The obligation of producing a Green Pass along with its cumbersome verification process created waits of two hours or more under the summer sun at Rome’s touristic hotspots like the Colosseum, the Pantheon, and the Roman Forum, despite the relatively low number of tourists.

Stories abounded Friday of visitors and tour guides being denied access to sites because of glitches in the system. One Italian guide told Breitbart News that when she finally reached the entrance to the Colosseum after waiting more than an hour and a half in line, she was turned away by the gatekeeper who said her Green Pass had “expired,” despite the fact that she has had a double injection of the coronavirus vaccine.

Meanwhile, in the southern Italian city of Naples, Fabrizio Masucci, the director of the prestigious Sansevero Chapel Museum, resigned from his post earlier this week in protest against the requirement of the Green Pass in museums, which he deems discriminatory and exploitative.

Government officials have explained that the decision to require the Green Pass was made “for the stated purpose of obtaining more numerous recruits in the vaccination campaign,” Masucci declared.

“Without entering into the merits of the aims the government has set for itself, and obviously not having any prejudices whatsoever against vaccines, I nevertheless object to the instrumentalization of museums… for achieving any objective foreign to their natural purpose,” he said, especially when that instrumentalization “jeopardizes rather than favoring social cohesion.”

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