Italy

Italian minister delivers warning over reform of euro zone bailout fund

ROME (Reuters) - Reform of the European Stability Mechanism (ESM) bailout fund may be unacceptable for Italy, Foreign Minister Luigi Di Maio told daily Corriere della Sera on Wednesday.

The proposals have created a political storm in Italy, where parties and institutions are battling over whether Rome should try to block the changes at the European Union level.

3rd record tide enters Venice as Italy hit with snow, rain

VENICE, Italy (AP) — Venice was hit Sunday by a record third exceptional tide in the same week while other parts of Italy struggled with a series of weather woes, from rain-swollen rivers to high winds to an out-of-season avalanche.

Stores and museums in Venice were mostly closed in the hardest-hit area around St. Mark’s Square, but tourists donned high rubber boots or even hip waders to witness and photograph the spectacle.

Venice hit by another ferocious high tide, flooding city

VENICE (Reuters) - Venice was inundated by exceptionally high water levels on Friday just days after the lagoon city suffered the worst flood in more than 50 years.

The central St. Mark’s Square was submerged and closed to tourists, while shops and hotels were once more invaded by rising waters bringing fresh misery to the fragile city.

Local authorities said the high tide peaked at 154 cm (5.05 ft), slightly below expectations and significantly lower than the 187 cm level reached on Tuesday — the second highest tide ever recorded in Venice.

Climate change, corruption blamed for Venice flood devastation

14 November 2019; AFP: Much of Venice was left under water after the highest tide in 50 years ripped through the historic Italian city, beaching gondolas, trashing hotels and sending tourists fleeing through rapidly rising waters.

The government in Rome was expected to declare a state of emergency at a cabinet meeting on Thursday after Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte described the flooding as "a blow to the heart of our country".

Italy's Salvini triumphs in Umbria as government alliance slumps

ROME (Reuters) - League leader Matteo Salvini led the opposition center-right to a crushing victory in the Italian region of Umbria, results on Monday showed, raising questions about how long the national government in Rome can survive.

Parties in the ruling coalition, the anti-establishment 5-Star Movement and center-left Democratic Party (PD), stood together on a joint ticket for the first time in the Umbrian vote, but were crushed by a resurgent Salvini.

Ex-CIA spy flees from Italy to U.S. fearing for her safety: paper

ROME (Reuters) - A former U.S. spy, pardoned by Italy in connection with the CIA kidnapping of a terrorism suspect in Milan, has fled from Italy to the United States fearing for her safety, Italian newspaper Il Corriere della Sera on Sunday quoted her as saying.

Sabrina de Sousa is one of 26 people convicted by Italy in absentia over the 2003 abduction of Egyptian cleric Hassan Mustafa Osama Nasr, but the only one to spend any time in prison for the operation, in which she denies involvement.

Italy says 2020 budget not a significant deviation from EU rules

ROME (Reuters) - Italy’s 2020 draft budget does not imply a significant deviation from European Union rules, the Italian government said in a letter sent to the European Commission on Thursday.

Italy’s fiscal plan assumes a rise in the structural deficit, the measure excluding business cycle swings and one-off expenditure and revenue, of 0.1% of GDP. Under EU rules, it should fall 0.6% of GDP.

Pope Francis to declare Indian nun a saint on Oct 13

Kochi, Oct 12 (PTI) Pope Francis will declare Indian nun Mariam Thresia Chiramel Mankidiyan a saint on October 13 at the Vatican City, the Church said.

Mariam Thresia, the foundress of the Congregation of the Sisters of the Holy Family (CHF), will be raised to the glory of the altar during a solemn Eucharistic Celebration in Rome's St Peter's Square on Sunday, Vatican News said.

EU cannot accept Turkish 'blackmail': Italian prime minister

ROME (Reuters) - The European Union must not bow to threats from Turkey to push millions of Syrian refugees into EU countries, Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte said on Friday, adding that Ankara should stop its military operations in northern Syria at once.

“The EU cannot accept this blackmail. Turkish efforts to welcome in Syrian refugees cannot then become a tool of blackmail for a military initiative that we cannot accept and which must immediately stop,” Conte told reporters.

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