Italy

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Venice Close to Implementing New Rule: No Sitting

To control tourist behavior, mayor pushing for ban on sitting, except in designated areas

(Newser) - We hope you're sitting down for this news, especially if you're planning a trip to Venice—because you might not be able to sit down once you get there. That's because Luigi Brugnaro, the city's mayor, wants to start fining folks if they plop themselves down... More »

Police Shut Down Italy's First Sex Doll Brothel

There are concerns over the hygiene of the dolls

(Newser) - After just nine days in operation, Italy's first and only sex doll brothel was raided and shut down by police. The establishment, located in Turin, allegedly violated laws related to renting accommodations, the Local reports. Authorities also are looking into whether the "silicone sex workers"—which police... More »

For First Time Ever, Fake Reviews Get Guy Sent to Jail

TripAdvisor hails landmark ruling in Italy

(Newser) - For what is believed to be the first time, a person has been sent to jail for writing fake reviews online. The Italian man ran a company called PromoSalento, which sold hotels fake reviews, and in what's being widely hailed as a landmark ruling this week a court in... More »

Fate Uncertain for Migrants Stuck on Italian Ship

They have been on the Diciotti five days as of Friday

(Newser) - In what Courthouse News calls "a high-stakes legal and political drama," some 150 asylum seekers rescued from the Mediterranean Sea are being held on a docked Italian coast guard ship for a fifth day on Friday. Interior Minister Matteo Salvini—an anti-immigrant politician who has refused to let... More »

Italy Searching for 2 'Idiots' Who Jumped Into Fountain

It happened to also be a war memorial

(Newser) - Tourists love to break Italy's law against jumping into its many fountains, but two men who stripped down to their underwear for a photo-worthy dip have particularly irked locals with their fountain of choice. After all, the fountain sits at Rome's Altar of the Fatherland, which holds the... More »

Family's Bodies Found Days After Genoa Bridge Collapse

Officials believe all missing have been accounted for

(Newser) - It's been nearly a week since an "apocalyptic" bridge collapse in Italy, and the death toll has climbed for perhaps the last time. Reuters reports the bodies of three family members—the last three people believed missing—were pulled from a crushed car over the weekend in the... More »

Survivors Pulled From Cars as Bridge Collapse Toll Hits 35

'There was total panic,' Genoa survivor says

(Newser) - Rescuers say the scene—and the task before them—is similar to the aftermath of an earthquake, but the cause of the disaster in Genoa was very different. The confirmed death toll from Tuesday's bridge collapse now stands at 35, including at least three children, and rescuers worked long... More »

'Apocalyptic Scene' on a Genoa Bridge

250-foot section collapses, killing at least 25

(Newser) - A witness described an "apocalyptic scene" Tuesday in Genoa, Italy, where a 250-foot section of the Morandi Bridge on the A10 highway collapsed in a fierce storm, reports the AP . Mayor Marco Bucci says at least 25 people have been confirmed dead. The bridge is 300 feet high, and... More »

Island Fights Tourists Trying to Steal Tons of Sand

Sardinia will fine you up to $3.4K if you take sand, rocks, or shells from its beaches

(Newser) - Do the crime, pay the fine—and on the island of Sardinia, the fine for collecting sand as a souvenir can be quite steep. The Telegraph reports a 40-year-old British tourist now has to fork over nearly $1,200 after local police say he was found with a plastic bottle... More »

'Hero' Dog Saved Humans. One Allegedly Killed It

Poisoning suspected in death of rescue dog Kaos

(Newser) - "Keep up your work up there, keep looking for the missing and saving lives." It's an unusual message for a deceased dog, but an appropriate one for Kaos, a German shepherd credited with helping find survivors buried in Italy following a 6.2-magnitude earthquake that killed nearly... More »

George Clooney Hit by Car in Italy

Actor is 'fine,' escaped with only minor injuries, after collision on his motorbike

(Newser) - George Clooney is "fine" but recovering after he was hit by a car in Sardinia on Tuesday. Clooney had departed his Costa Corallina hotel on what's variously described as a motorbike or scooter when he was hit by a car around 8:15am local time. Per CNN , Clooney—... More »

Pompeii Victim's Death Not What It Seemed

It wasn't decapitation, but it was still pretty awful

(Newser) - In reporting on the discovery of a centuries-old Pompeii victim in May, we wrote that it wasn't hard to figure out what killed the man: Archaeologists found a massive stone block, probably hurled by a volcanic cloud, severing the top part of his body. Now it turns out the... More »

Weird Saga of British Model's Kidnapping Reaches Its End

Lucasz Herba is found guilty

(Newser) - A British model described a terrifying kidnap ordeal ; the man arrested in the case claimed she was in on it . Now, a conclusion: An Italian court on Monday found Lucasz Herba guilty of kidnapping Chloe Ayling last July and sentenced him to 16 years and nine months. Ayling, then 20,... More »

Region Known for Healthy Diet Now Known for Overweight Kids

For children, the 'Mediterranean diet is gone,' says researchers

(Newser) - The Mediterranean diet is seen as one of the world's healthiest. Now, however, a new report suggests a surprising irony: Kids who live in the Mediterranean region are among the most overweight children in the world. For example, 43% of 9-year-old boys and girls in Cyprus are overweight or... More »

Italy Turmoil: 'We Should Now Call This a Crisis'

Once again, the fate of the eurozone is uncertain

(Newser) - The specter of a financial crisis came back to haunt Italy on Tuesday, as its markets plunged on fears that the eurozone's third-largest economy is heading toward an election that will be a referendum on whether to stay in the common currency. The Wall Street Journal notes that the... More »

Judge Rules Tiny 'Warrior' Can't Go to Rome for More Treatment

UK High Court judge says nothing else can help Alfie Evans; his parents are appealing

(Newser) - A UK High Court judge may have deemed his decision Tuesday "the final chapter" in the case of little Alfie Evans, but Alfie's parents aren't ready to accept that ending. The BBC and Guardian report on the court's ruling that the seriously ill 23-month-old—who suffers... More »

He Took an Eggplant 9 Years Ago. Finally, Closure

Italy's Supreme Court acquits man who lifted the fruit to feed his child

(Newser) - In Italy's own version of Les Misérables, a man who's fought a nearly 10-year legal battle over an eggplant finally got his reprieve from the country's court of last resort. Per AFP , the unnamed man, then 49, was nabbed by cops in 2009 emerging from private... More »

Huge Volcano May Face 'Catastrophic Failure'

Mount Etna is slowly drifting toward the Mediterranean

(Newser) - Europe's biggest and most active volcano is sliding into the Mediterranean Sea and could suffer catastrophic failure one day—even if that day is far away, the BBC reports. Scientists who studied Mount Etna on the Italian island of Sicily say it is sliding just over half an inch... More »

Cops Bust 'Psycho Sect' That Pushed Strict Macrobiotic Diet

Italian police say one follower of Mario Pianesi dropped to just 77 pounds

(Newser) - He called doctors "assassins" and convinced sick followers to adhere to a strict macrobiotic diet, police in Italy say. But in reality, police say those who followed the teachings of 73-year-old Mario Pianesi and his 51-year-old wife were fleeced for money, manipulated into working for next to nothing for... More »

Voters in Italy Just Ousted the Establishment

Populist and far-right parties deal a strong blow to the euro zone

(Newser) - Italian voters went to the polls over the weekend and upended the political establishment. The big winners were populist and far-right parties, which received about 55% of the vote in total, though it could take weeks to figure out exactly what kind of coalition will be governing the country. The... More »

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