tighten the thumbscrew

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Senior Member
Español de Uruguay
Hi everyone!

I'm trying to guess the meaning of this expression. I came across it in a comment reacting to an article about Berlusconi's resignation.

This is the context: "I am not so certain that his replacement will do anything else apart from tightening the thumbscrew more for the public."

From the definition of "thumbscrew" - a torture element that squeezes your fingers - I imagine it means something like torturing the public even more, or making their situation even more difficult.

Am I right?
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