Latest Italy News

Ancient basilica on lagoon island hard hit in Venice flood

Nov. 19, 2019 1:45 PM EST

MILAN (AP) — One of the most ancient churches of Venice, a Byzantine basilica established in the year 639, counts among the 60 churches damaged in three exceptional floods last week, officials said Tuesday. The ancient Santa Maria Assunta Basilica, and the adjacent Santa Maria Fosca church, were...

Italian prosecutors investigate ex-minister Salvini

Nov. 19, 2019 8:44 AM EST

MILAN (AP) — Prosecutors in Sicily are investigating former Italian Interior Minister Matteo Salvini for not allowing a humanitarian rescue ship to enter Italian waters this summer. The news agency ANSA said Salvini was being investigated for abduction and dereliction of duty for the 20-day stand-off with...

Flood-hit Venice’s dwindling population faces mounting woes

Nov. 18, 2019 8:13 PM EST

VENICE, Italy (AP) — One of only four oar makers for Venice’s famed gondoliers, Paolo Brandolisio wades through his ground-floor workshop for the third time in a week of record-breaking floods, despairing of any help from national or local institutions. “If these phenomena continue to repeat...

Italian police smash cross-border antiquities trafficking

Nov. 18, 2019 10:54 AM EST

ROME (AP) — Italian police have broken up a cross-border criminal gang illicitly trafficking in archaeological artifacts clandestinely excavated in southern Italy for export abroad, authorities said Monday. The culture-crime division of the Carabinieri military police said two suspects were jailed and 21...

Tolerant Thailand to welcome pope, but martyrs tale haunts

Nov. 17, 2019 11:52 PM EST

SONGKHON, Thailand (AP) — When Pope Francis makes his first trip to Thailand this week, he will be visiting a country that welcomed Roman Catholic missionaries more than five centuries ago and whose Buddhist population remains strikingly tolerant of other religious beliefs. But in 1940, as militarism and...

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

Nov. 17, 2019 10:36 PM EST

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...

Italy’s white truffle hunters worry about climate change

Nov. 17, 2019 1:54 PM EST

ALBA, Italy (AP) — Rising global temperatures are worrying truffle hunters around the Italian town of Alba, where the most prized specimens can fetch twice the price of gold. This particularly warm October, eight out of 10 white truffles unearthed by Carlo Olivero with his trusty 3-year-old dog Steel were...

Pope decries that ‘greed of a few’ worsens poverty of others

Nov. 17, 2019 8:58 AM EST

VATICAN CITY (AP) — Pope Francis on Sunday decried that the “greed of a few” wealthy people is compounding the plight of the poor before sharing a meal with the jobless and the homeless that has become a tradition of his papacy. Celebrating a Mass in St. Peter’s Basilica dedicated to...

Venice braces for another exceptional tide, tourists flee

Nov. 17, 2019 3:29 AM EST

VENICE, Italy (AP) — Venetians are bracing for the prospect of another exceptional tide in a season that is setting records. Officials are forecasting a 1.6 meter (5 feet, 2 inch) surge of water Sunday through the lagoon city. That comes after Tuesday’s 1.87-meter flood, the worst in 53 years,...

Young Venetians volunteer after flood of their lifetimes

Nov. 16, 2019 1:35 PM EST

VENICE, Italy (AP) — As soon as waters receded from this week’s devastating flood, about 50 young Venetians wearing rubber boots and gripped by a sense of determination showed up at the city’s Music Conservatory to help save precious manuscripts. Thanks to their work, some 50 linear meters of...