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Italy: state of emergency in Ischia after a landslide

The Italian media announced Sunday afternoon that a total of four bodies had been recovered, recalling that an official report will not be given until the evening by the prefect of Naples Claudio Palomba.

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Italy: state of emergency in Ischia after a landslide

The Italian media announced Sunday afternoon that a total of four bodies had been recovered, recalling that an official report will not be given until the evening by the prefect of Naples Claudio Palomba.

The state of emergency is often declared in the peninsula, following earthquakes, volcanic eruptions or severe weather, because it provides for an accelerated procedure for mobilizing funds and resources, including those for civil protection, for emergency interventions or setting up reception facilities.

Casamicciola Terme, a spa resort of 8,000 inhabitants in winter on the lush island of Ischia, near Capri, suffered an earthquake in 2017 that killed two people.

It had, however, been completely destroyed by a much more powerful earthquake at the end of the 19th century.

On the spot, more than 200 members of the civil protection and the police are still looking for a dozen missing, while hundreds of volunteers, mud up to their knees, are busy cleaning the streets of the small town. .

Remains of cars and buses crushed by the violence of the mudslide and rocks are visible everywhere in a ballet of diggers trying to free up access to houses, cars and shops.

- A devastating urbanization -

"It's a situation that hurts us, if only for the people who disappeared under the mountain. Here it's an island and even if we don't really know each other, it's almost that, at least view," Salvatore Lorini, 45, a resident of Ischia, where he was born, told AFP on the spot.

"The mountain came down, there was a devastation of shops, cars, hotels and that was already happening nine years ago. Now I'm cleaning up my mother-in-law's shop," said- he explained.

This shift was caused by the lack of maintenance and prevention "because nature is nature, there was the earthquake, but a little prevention" might have saved lives, according to Mr. Lorini who would like the establishment of a system similar to that of buoys warning of the arrival of a tsunami, but making it possible to tell the population that the earth is moving.

"I must be sincere, if I could, I would leave Casamicciola because now I find it difficult to live there, even if I must say that my house has overcome the earthquake, the floods", assures the AFP-TV Iacono Maria, 64, assuring that the latest events had "broken his heart".

"I am close to the population of the island of Ischia affected by a flood. I pray for the victims, for those who suffer and for all those who intervened in the rescue," said Pope Francis for his part after the Angelus prayer.

"In Ischia there is an urbanization that has hit and devastated the whole territory," Tommaso Moramarco, director of the Institute for Research and Hydro-Geological Protection, told AGI.

"When the island entered the period of mass tourism, the growth of infrastructures was exponential, suffocating all the natural elements of the territory and covering everything with cement", denounced for his part the geologist Mario Tozzi in the pages of La Stampa, recalling the existence of tens of thousands of abusive constructions in Ischia.

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