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Sensors and satellites deployed to save Pompeii

Ground sensors and satellites will be deployed in a new bid to keep the ancient Roman city of Pompeii from crumbling following a series of recent collapses at the sprawling and long-neglected site near Naples. Italian aerospace and defence giant Finmeccanica on Thursday said it was donating the technology to the culture ministry in a 1.7 million euro ($2.3 million) project entitled "Pompeii: Give it a Future".

Ex-Berlusconi government official arrested for mafia collusion

By Amalia De Simone and Steve Scherer NAPLES (Reuters) - Italian police arrested a former member of Silvio Berlusconi's government, accusing him of colluding with the mafia to quash competition against his family's petrol distribution business near Naples, officials said on Thursday. Nicola Cosentino, an undersecretary in the Economy Ministry from 2008-2010 and the ex-boss of Berlusconi's party in the region around Naples, was arrested along with 12 others on suspicion of extortion and unfair competitive practices.

Proxy adviser Glass Lewis backs Recchi as chairman of Telecom Italia

MILAN (Reuters) - Proxy advisor Glass Lewis has recommended that Telecom Italia investors vote in favor of Giuseppe Recchi as chairman of the board when shareholders meet on April 16, it said in a document seen by Reuters. Telecom Italia's largest investor Telco said earlier this month it had proposed Recchi as chairman of Italy's largest phone group. Recchi is a former executive at General Electric and is currently chairman of Italian state-owned oil group Eni.

'Naive' duo arrested at Vatican with 2.8 trillion euro in fake bonds

VATICAN CITY (Reuters) - Italian police earlier this month arrested two "naive" men who tried to enter the Vatican carrying fake bonds with an apparent value of some 2.8 trillion euros, Vatican officials said on Sunday. The American and Dutchman appeared on March 11 at St. Anne's Gate at the Vatican saying they wanted to go the to the Vatican bank, which is not open to the general public.

Berlusconi's latest political strategy: pet adoptions

Former Italian premier Silvio Berlusconi has unveiled a scheme to boost his flagging popularity: finding homes for hundreds of thousands of stray dogs and cats to win the hearts of animal lovers, media reports said Sunday. "We need to find a daddy or mummy for thousands of abandoned dogs and cats," the billionaire reportedly said in a telephone call to one of his fan clubs in Rome, as he scrambles to revive support for his centre-right Forza Italia (Go Italy) party, hit hard by his political downfall last year.

Berlusconi's latest political strategy: pet adoptions

Former Italian premier Silvio Berlusconi has unveiled a scheme to boost his flagging popularity: finding homes for hundreds of thousands of stray dogs and cats to win the hearts of animal lovers, media reports said Sunday. "We need to find a daddy or mummy for thousands of abandoned dogs and cats," the billionaire reportedly said in a telephone call to one of his fan clubs in Rome, as he scrabbles to revive support for his centre-right Forza Italia (Go Italy) party, hit hard by his political downfall last year.

US, Dutch men try to deposit billions in fake bonds in Vatican bank

Vatican police on Saturday apprehended an American and a Dutch man who were trying to deposit billions of euros and US dollars in fake bonds in the Vatican bank. The men were stopped by the police when they approached one of the guarded gates at the Vatican and asked to be let through to the Institute for Religious Works (IOR) as the bank is formally known, Vatican spokesman Federico Lombardi told AFP.

Barack Obama leaves Italy for Saudi Arabia

US President Barack Obama on Friday left Italy for Saudi Arabia -- the last stop of his six-day tour of Europe and the Middle East. Obama's plane, Air Force One, left Rome's Fiumicino airport at 0955 GMT, an AFP photographer travelling with the president said. The US leader was expected to spend Friday evening in talks with Saudi King Abdullah on a royal estate outside the capital Riyadh. The visit comes amid strategic differences over Iran and Syria, which are straining a historic alliance between the United States and Saudi Arabia.

Pope Francis meets with Obama at Vatican

Vatican City, Mar 27 (EFE).- Pope Francis and U.S. President Barack Obama met for 50 minutes on Thursday at the Vatican. The meeting lasted more than the 30 minutes that most of the pope's conversations with heads of state and government run. The pontiff and the U.S. leader exchanged presents and introduced their delegations. Obama met with Vatican Secretary of State Pietro Parolin, who had a long meeting at the Vatican with his U.S. counterpart, John Kerry, in January. Kerry also participated in Thursday's meeting at the Vatican.

Pope Francis meets with Obama at Vatican

Vatican City, Mar 27 (EFE).- Pope Francis and U.S. President Barack Obama met for 50 minutes on Thursday at the Vatican. The meeting lasted more than the 30 minutes that most of the pope's conversations with heads of state and government run. The pontiff and the U.S. leader exchanged presents and introduced their delegations. Obama met with Vatican Secretary of State Pietro Parolin, who had a long meeting at the Vatican with his U.S. counterpart, John Kerry, in January. Kerry also participated in Thursday's meeting at the Vatican.
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