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After 30 Years Alone on an Island, He's Told to Clear Out

Italian authorities say Mauro Morandi has no claim to Budelli

(Newser) - It's a good time to be living alone on "one of the most beautiful islands in the entire Mediterranean." But the quiet paradise Mauro Morandi has enjoyed for 30 years on the Isle of Budelli off the coast of Sardinia will soon be taken from him, reports... More »

In France, Italy, Spain, Virus Wiped Out Years of Growth

Spanish economy shrank 18.5% in 2nd quarter

(Newser) - France, Italy, and Spain reported precipitous contractions Friday for their coronavirus-battered economies, with the pandemic wiping out years of growth in a matter of weeks as the lockdowns closed shops, factories, and restaurants. The Spanish economy shrank by 18.5% in the April-June period from the previous quarter, the French... More »

Italian Tenor Says He Was 'Humiliated' by Lockdown

Andrea Bocelli says he resented having to stay home

(Newser) - Italian tenor Andrea Bocelli, who recovered from COVID-19 and whose moving Easter performance sought to raise hopes during the pandemic, is striking a different public note, saying Italy's lockdown made him feel "humiliated and offended" by depriving him of his freedom. Bocelli spoke at a panel Monday in... More »

Virus Passes Over Italian Island

Researchers are still guessing at possible reasons

(Newser) - Stranded on a tiny Italian island, a cancer researcher grew alarmed as one, and then three more visitors fell ill with COVID-19. Paola Muti braced for a rapid spread of the coronavirus to the 800 close-knit islanders. Her mother was born on Giglio Island, and she often stays at the... More »

Famed Paralympian in Coma After Terrible Crash

'All of Italy is fighting with you,' PM tells Zanardi

(Newser) - After a horrific CART racing crash in 2001 cost him both his legs, Alex Zanardi built his own prosthetics and made an incredible comeback as a Paralympic athlete, winning gold in handcycling four times. Now, a second horrific crash for Zanardi. The 53-year-old former Formula One driver was placed in... More »

18 Months After Theft, Banksy Piece Found in Attic

Authorities recover mural dedicated to Bataclan victims

(Newser) - Italian authorities on Thursday unveiled a stolen artwork by the British artist Banksy that was painted as a tribute to the victims of the 2015 terror attacks at the Bataclan music hall in Paris. The L'Aquila prosecutors' office said the work was recovered Wednesday during a search of a... More »

As Docs Operated on Her Brain, She Stuffed 90 Olives

Woman prepares classic Italian snack in under an hour while surgeons removed brain tumor

(Newser) - Playing instruments while your brain is getting operated on is so last decade . Ask "Donna," who recently whipped up a traditional Italian snack while surgeons were removing a tumor from her left temporal lobe. The BBC and ABC News report that the 2.5-hour procedure took place recently... More »

In Italy, Far Too Few Have Tracing App

Immuni can't be effective if only 2 million people have it

(Newser) - The Italian government’s point person on combating the COVID-19 pandemic says so far not enough Italians have downloaded an app to help health authorities trace contacts with persons testing positive for the virus. Domenico Arcuri said in an interview with Italian state TV on Sunday that 2 million people... More »

Boy Being Followed by Bear: 'This Is So Cool'

Italian boy stayed relaxed during close encounter

(Newser) - A 12-year-old Italian boy had a frighteningly close encounter with a bear while hiking with his family on Sunday. He says it was the greatest day of his life. Video of the encounter shows Alessandro slowly and cautiously walking away as the brown bear follows him down a mountain path,... More »

Court Gives OK to Steve Bannon for Right-Wing 'Political Academy'

Ex-Trump adviser will set up Dignitatis Humanae Institute in centuries-old Italian monastery

(Newser) - Steve Bannon, President Trump's controversial former top adviser, has emerged victorious in his quest to set up a "right-wing Catholic political academy" in Italy, per Reuters . A ruling released Tuesday notes that the Dignitatis Humanae Institute will be able to set up shop in an 800-year-old monastery to... More »

Airline Flies to Italy, Forgets to See if Airport Is Open

After 'sightseeing tour,' Eurowings took 2 passengers back to Germany

(Newser) - A plane carried passengers from Germany to Italy before turning around midair because its intended airport is closed until next month. A spokesperson for German airline Eurowings confirmed the Saturday mix-up, which played out over four hours, per CNN . Flight EW9844 set off from Düsseldorf, intending to make the... More »

Get Used to Life Like This, Leaders Tell Europeans

Conte, Johnson advise their nations not to count on a vaccine

(Newser) - In separate, stark warnings, two major European leaders have bluntly told their citizens that the world needs to adapt to living with the coronavirus and cannot wait to be saved by a vaccine. Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte, pushed by his nation's regional leaders and weeks ahead of an... More »

Slammed by Virus, Russia Earns Dubious New Distinction

With more than 221K cases, it's now No. 3 in the world, behind only Spain and the United States

(Newser) - Russia has jumped past Italy and the United Kingdom in its struggle with the coronavirus, now making it the country with the third largest number of cases. Per Reuters , the number of confirmed cases there shot to 221,344 as of Monday. It lags only behind Spain, which has just... More »

This Country Might Be the Envy of the World

People are going outside again in Spain

(Newser) - Spaniards filled the streets Saturday to exercise outside in gorgeous spring weather for the first time in seven weeks, while German children rushed to playgrounds as countries in Western Europe moved ahead with the gradual relaxation of coronavirus lockdown restrictions, the AP reports. Russia and Pakistan, however, reported their biggest... More »

Global Death Toll Reaches a Milestone

Coronavirus number rising, but some stats were positive

(Newser) - The worldwide death toll from the coronavirus has hit 100,000, according to the running tally kept by Johns Hopkins University . The true number of lives lost is likely to be much higher because of limited testing, different rules for counting the dead, and even cover-ups by some governments, the... More »

Lockdown May Have Prevented a Bridge-Collapse Tragedy

Road was empty due to northern Italy lockdown

(Newser) - The strict lockdown in northern Italy may have saved lives in more ways than one. A bridge collapsed Wednesday morning, but there was almost no traffic on the normally busy road in Aulla, which sits halfway between Genoa and Florence, reports Reuters . Authorities believe there were only two drivers on... More »

Legend Resurfaces in Italian Village Still Free of Coronavirus

Mayor of Montaldo Torinese says 'miracle water' probably not the reason

(Newser) - As the coronavirus pandemic ravages Italy, the village of Montaldo Torinese has so far escaped unscathed. Though it's just 11 miles from Turin—which had 3,658 confirmed cases of COVID-19 as of Saturday—in the country's northern Piedmont region, none of its residents had as of the... More »

For 101-Year-Old Virus Patient, a 'Truly Extraordinary' Recovery

'Mr. P' was born in 1919, during the Spanish flu pandemic

(Newser) - The New York Post is calling him a "living marvel," while Forbes deems his case "miraculous." At the very least, a 101-year-old Italian man is making headlines after being released from the hospital after recovering from the coronavirus. CNN reports that "Mr. P" was admitted... More »

A 'Historic First' From Pope, With No One There to See It

Francis offered rare blessing to an empty St. Peter's Square, calling coronavirus a 'tempest'

(Newser) - The "Urbi et Orbi" ("To the City and the World") prayer recited by the pope is typically only offered on three occasions: on Christmas, on Easter, and when a new pontiff is chosen. On Friday, however, Pope Francis climbed the steps of St. Peter's Basilica in... More »

Hidden in Plain View, an Ancient Sword

5K-year-old blade was initially labeled as medieval sword on display at monastery

(Newser) - A PhD student had a hunch that a monastery's sword, labeled as medieval, was actually much, much older. After two years of study, "it all came full circle," Italian archaeologist Vittoria Dall'Armellina, who's now completed her schooling at Venice's Ca' Foscari University, tells CNN... More »

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