Italian government authorities have ordered the removal of pro-fascist posters at a beach near Venice.

Ansa, the Italian news agency, says the ordinance issued on Monday by the prefect based in Venice cited concerns that public order could be disturbed by signs and photos of Benito Mussolini, Italy's wartime fascist dictator. Italian law forbids glorifying fascism.

One of the signs proclaimed the area to be an "anti-democratic" zone.

Rome daily La Repubblica reported on Sunday that pro-Mussolini speeches were blasted over the Chioggia beach's loudspeaker, and that one sign warned that facilities on the beach were for paying customers, otherwise "a truncheon on your teeth." It quoted the 64-year-old owner of the concession as saying: "Here, my rules count."

Italian beaches usually have a snack bar, changing rooms, bathrooms and beach chairs available for a fee, operated by a concession-holder who pays the local authorities. Corriere della Sera daily said Venice-based police inspected the Chioggia beach on Sunday.