Correspondent, Rome, Italy
Catherine's Feed
Mar 3, 2011

Italy preparing for mass exodus from North Africa

ROME (Reuters) – Italy is preparing for a potential mass exodus of migrants escaping political turmoil in North Africa, a government minister said on Thursday, after flows of illegal immigrants from Tunisia picked up overnight.

Waves of hundreds of migrants fleeing to Italy to escape instability have resumed in recent days after stormy weather that had discouraged boats in the past week cleared up.

Feb 13, 2011

Italian women protest over Berlusconi sex scandal

ROME (Reuters) – Women rallied across Italy on Sunday, incensed by Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi’s sex scandal which they say has hurt their dignity and reinforced outdated gender stereotypes.

Thousands of protesters marched through Naples and Palermo, carrying banners calling for Berlusconi to resign and chanting “Italy is not a brothel,” television pictures showed.

Feb 12, 2011

Fiat reassures Berlusconi over Italy plans

ROME, Feb 12 (Reuters)- Fiat (FIA.MI: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) boss Sergio Marchionne
reassured Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi on Saturday over his
plans for Italy after suggestions of moving the Turin-based
group’s headquarters outside the country caused outrage.

Berlusconi summoned Marchionne and Fiat Chairman John Elkann
for a meeting at his office on Saturday to clarify whether Fiat
would pursue its $27 billion investment plan for Italy.

Feb 7, 2011

Women will turn against “sultan” Berlusconi – Bindi

ROME (Reuters) – One of Italy’s most senior female politicians has condemned Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi as a “sultan” who degrades women and predicted many of those who voted for him will abandon him in the next election.

Rosy Bindi, president of the opposition Democratic Party and deputy speaker of the lower house of parliament, said in an interview sex scandals were likely to cost Berlusconi power.

Jan 27, 2011

Women will turn against “sultan” Berlusconi – Bindi

ROME (Reuters) – One of Italy’s most senior female politicians has condemned Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi as a “sultan” who degrades women and predicted many of those who voted for him will abandon him in the next election.

Rosy Bindi, president of the opposition Democratic Party and deputy speaker of the lower house of parliament, said in an interview sex scandals were likely to cost Berlusconi power.

Jan 19, 2011

Italy faces weak growth through 2012, higher debt: Reuters poll

ROME (Reuters) – Italy faces sluggish growth this year and next, while its public debt is seen hitting new highs, according to a Reuters poll that showed a broadly unchanged outlook compared with three months ago.

The median forecast in the quarterly survey of about 20 analysts points to a 1.0 percent rise in gross domestic product (GDP) this year, the same weak growth rate as in 2010 and well below expectations for the euro zone average.

Jan 18, 2011

Italy 2010 budget deficit below 5 pct/GDP -cbank

ROME, Jan 18 (Reuters) – Italy’s public deficit is expected
to have fallen below a government target of 5 percent of gross
domestic product in 2010, the central bank said on Tuesday, but
economic growth will remain weak.

In its quarterly economic bulletin, the Bank of Italy said
reduced government spending had helped to bring the deficit of
the euro zone’s third-largest economy within the official
target.

Jan 5, 2011

FAO sees record food prices heading even higher

ROME (Reuters) – Prices of corn, wheat and other grains can go much higher and current weather patterns are of concern, the United Nations’ food agency said on Wednesday after announcing a record high for its food price index in December.

The FAO’s food price index, which measures monthly price changes for a food basket composed of cereals, oilseeds, dairy, meat and sugar, averaged 215 points last month, up from 206 points in November.

Dec 17, 2010

Italy minister says Rome violence was pre-planned

ROME (Reuters) – An Italian government minister on Friday said violence during protests in Rome this week was pre-planned by political extremists, and rejected media reports that young people have become disillusioned with politicians.

Some of the worst street riots in Italy for years broke out on Rome’s streets Tuesday as a protest that began peacefully suddenly escalated after Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi survived a no-confidence motion in parliament.

Dec 17, 2010

48 Hours in Rome, the “eternal city”

ROME (Reuters) – Got 48 hours to explore Rome, the ancient city with a jaw-dropping list of historical sights that can overwhelm even the most experienced traveller?

The Italian saying “Non basta una vita” — a lifetime is not enough to experience it — accurately captures the sensory overload Rome offers visitors.