Michael Day

Italy Correspondent for The Independent

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To this day, only two bridges connect the ghetto to the rest of Venice

Appeal launched to save the world's first ghetto

As its 500th anniversary nears, Venice seeks to restore Europe's original Jewish quarter...but can they raise the £7m needed?

Postcard from... Rome

The impression here in Italy that the wheels are falling off grew stronger yesterday, Black Friday. While a group of orphaned African refugees were turned away from the reception centre they had come to regard as home, and a baying crowd of locals threatened and insulted them, nationwide strikes and protests left many cities choking in tear gas. The lucky ones with jobs walked home because there were no trains or buses.

Nino Di Matteo is said to have been assigned an armoured vehicle for his personal transport

Security increased for anti-Mafia prosecutor after informant reveals Cosa Nostra plans to assassinate him with a bazooka

Palermo magistrate Nino Di Matteo is currently leading the prosecution of 10 former state officials following a probe into state-Mafia negotiations in the 1990s

Protesters hold a banner reading ‘enough uncivilised immigration’ in the Tor Sapienza area of Rome

Racial tensions in Rome: ‘Long live Il Duce’ chants as locals attack immigrant centre with rocks and petrol bombs

Residents in the Tor Sapienza district blame the African and Bengali refugees inside for the 'insupportable' levels of street crime in the area

Romans must wait a lot longer for completion of new metro line that is only a third built after 15 years

Despite endless hold-ups, rising costs and even a judicial investigation, Rome's mayor remains upbeat - even after a delay at Sunday’s launch

Postcard from... Rome

It has all the ingredients for an Italian story – ice cream, a pretty woman, a Berlusconi-owned magazine and political scandal.

A post mortem exam of Stefano Cucchi revealed internal injuries, a broken spine and dehydration

An agonising death in custody that shames Italy

Rome's chief prosecutor, Giuseppe Pignatone, met the dead man’s family

Postcard from... Rome

To add to the list of church initiatives that have sunk without trace comes a plan by Catholic priests to turn Halloween into “Holyween” in order to stop young people being lured by the occult.

A scene from Franco Zeffirelli's production of 'Aida' at Milan's famed La Scala opera house

Franco Zeffirelli takes on La Scala: Legendary opera director in battle with theatre over sale of one of his 'greatest' productions to Kazakhstan

The prickly, 91-year-old claims the ploy by the Milan opera house was part of a plan by the institution’s managers to airbrush him from Italian opera history

Giorgio Napolitano was Speaker of Italy’s parliament at the time of the Mafia violence

Prosecutors grill Italian President Giorgio Napolitano over alleged Mafia-state talks held in the early 1990s

The head of state - who was parliamentary Speaker at the time - tells special hearing 'he had never known of any deals' aimed at halting Cosa Nostra's deadly 1992-93 bombing campaign

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