Tag Archives: Italy

Floods in Italy by Sentinel-1

Torrential downpours have battered many parts of Italy this month, with extreme flooding wreaking havoc across northern Italy. The province of Alessandria is said to be one of the worst-affected areas according to Italian media, with around 200 people evacuated and 600 said to be left stranded.

This multi-temporal image uses two separate images captured by the Copernicus Sentinel-1 missiom on 13 November and 25 November. The flooded areas can be seen depicted in red, the Po River in black, and urban areas in white.

Copernicus Sentinel-1 radar ability to ‘see’ through clouds and rain, and in darkness, makes it particularly useful for monitoring floods. It can even easily differentiate water bodies, highlighting the difference between the Po River in black, and the extent of the flooding in red.
Around 500 people were evacuated further north in the Aosta Valley, where many roads were closed in fear of potential avalanches. Part of a viaduct serving the A6 motorway near Savona, in the northern region of Liguria, was washed away by a mudslide – leaving a 30 m gap in the road.

Images acquired before and after flooding offer immediate information on the extent of inundation and support assessments of property and environmental damage.

Earlier this month, the Copernicus Emergency Mapping Service was activated
to help respond to the floods in northeast Italy, where Venice saw record-breaking water levels and the worst flooding in 50 years.

Italy faces uninterrupted migrant flows

The ship Ocean Viking has docked in the Italian port of Messina, carrying 213 migrants collected at sea.The operation happened in parallel with the efforts of the other NGOs, also transporting groups of migrants to Italy from African coast. (Imqge: illustration).

A charity rescue NGO vessel brought 213 migrants to coast to Italy after being granted permission to dock in the port of Messina, motivating request by the poor weather conditions.
The migrants had been boarded by the Ocean Viking in three acts rescue operation.A pregnant woman with twins had already been evacuated from the ship by helicopter.

Taking into consideration the situation of the migrant flows to Italy, the government, long with Germany, France and Malta jointly applied to the European Commission to initiate the relocation of these migrants, according to the Italian Interior Ministry.

Italian authorities have also agreed to grant another NGO vessel – the Open Arms – access to a port to disembark 62 African migrants, the founder of the Spanish rescue mission said .

https://www.dw.com/en/key-eu-countries-agree-on-sea-migrant-redistribution-scheme/a-50549610

In spite of the seaosn rough conditions at sea, the flow of migrants from Africa has a steady growth.

“The NGOs orders and the Interior Ministry obeys: 62 immigrants land in Taranto and 78 others in Pozzallo. Government of incapable and calabraghe! With the ports open, more landings, more departures, more deaths at sea and more business for traffickers. Shame! #portichiusi” Matteo Salvini wrote in his Twitter micro blog.

After Lega leqder Matteo Salvini has left the government, the NGOs expericend a great releif, and dobouled their efforts to transport migrnats from Libyan coasts to Europe. According to the existing Dublin rules, the country which hosts the migrants first has full responsibility to provide for them in accordqnce with international obligations and standards.

Iraq: EU Foreign Ministers express concern

“We will have two days of Council,today with the Foreign Ministers,tomorrow with the Defence Ministers, with a full agenda as usual”, said the EU top diplomat Federica Mogherini upon her arrivals to the Foreign Affairs Council.

“But let me start with two issues that are not on today’s or tomorrow’s agenda. First, we followed yesterday with great concern and we are feeling very close to the Italian authorities and military over the attack in Iraq. We are following developments very closely there.

 

“And secondly, we are following the events in Bolivia. I would like to express clearly our wish that all parties in the country exercise restraint and responsibility and lead the country peacefully and quietly to new, credible elections that let the people of Bolivia express their democratic will.

“Today, with the Foreign Ministers we will address first and foremost the situation in Afghanistan after the elections and discuss how we can contribute to peace, reconciliation, but also development in the country.

“We will also have a discussion with the Ministers on the security situation in the Gulf, looking in particular at the European Union contribution to de-escalate tensions.

“And we will host the Prime Minister of Sudan [Abdalla Hamdok], for a discussion with him on how the European Union can best accompany the peace process and the recovery of the country.”

(The Defence Ministers Council takes place tomorrow on November !2, 2019).

EU-China protect GI products

European Commission announced it has reached a landmark agreement with China to protect 100 European Geographical Indication (GI) products, including 26 Italian ones, in China and 100 Chinese GI in the EU.

https://twitter.com/philhoganeu/status/1192461158504128514?s=21

The emblematic Italian food products such as Barolo wine, Prosciutto di Parma ham and Grana Padano cheese will now have greater protection from imitation on the wast Chinese market.

Among the Chinese products to feature in the agreement are Pixian Dou Ban (Pixian Bean Paste), Anji Bai Cha (Anji White Tea), Panjin Da Mi (Panjin rice) and Anqiu Da Jiang (Anqiu Ginger).
Four years after coming into force, the scope of the agreement will continue to expand to cover an additional 175 GI names from the EU and China.

https://twitter.com/winesolutions1/status/1191731814634807296?s=21

European Geographic Indication products are renowned across the world for their quality,” said European Agriculture and Rural Development Commissioner Phil Hogan. “Consumers are willing to pay a higher price, trusting the origin and authenticity of these products, while further rewarding farmers.

https://twitter.com/euagri/status/1192026337050943488?s=21

This agreement shows our commitment to working closely with our global trading partners such as China. “It is a win for both parties, strengthening our trading relationship, benefitting our agricultural and food sectors, and consumers on both sides”.

EU quality schemes aim at protecting the names of specific products to promote their unique characteristics, linked to their geographical origin as well as traditional know-how. This is one of the great successes of European agriculture, with more than 3,300 EU names registered as either Protected Geographical Indication (PGI) or Protected Designation of Origin (PDO). A further 1,250 or so non-EU names are also protected within the EU, mostly thanks to bilateral agreements such as this one with China. In value terms, the market for EU geographical indications is around €74.8 billion, and together they account for 15.4% of total EU food and drinks exports.

Leonardo masterpiece lent to Louvre

Director of Venice’s Galleria dell’Accademia Giulio Manieri Elia had agreed to lend Leonardo da Vinci’s Vitruvian Man (circa 1490) to the Louvre Museum, ANSA News agency reports. The French cultural establishment will have the iconic drawing for eight weeks for a exhibition on Leonardo set to open on October 24.

Franceschini is going to Paris on to sign a partnership memorandum with his French counterpart Franck Riester for the exchange of artworks.

Venice removes trinket shops

The Venice city council this week approved a resolution to stop trinket shops and cheap souvenir shops opening in St Mark’s Square and around the Rialto bridge,

https://twitter.com/niaforg/status/1177576501597876224?s=21

The decision to be ratified by the regional government indicates that new commerce will have to respect rules regarding quality of goods prior to obtaining a licence to sell.
The aim is maintain the city’s cultural identity.

Orban defends European identity

Hungary Prime Minister Victor Orbán has criticised Brussels’ intention to prevent László Trócsányi for obtaining position of European Commissioner, The former Minister of Justice was under fire of the European Parliament’s Legal Affairs Committee for his stance against immigration. The opinion of Prime Minister became public during his regular Friday morning interview on Kossuth Radio’s program Good Morning, Hungary.

The situation has not changed; László Trócsányi is an outstanding man, an internationally recognized lawyer, and an experienced diplomat. […] His only ‘sin’ is that he helped the Government–and me personally–to protect Hungary from immigration and ensured that no one could enter Hungary illegally without documents,Orbán said, adding that Hungary will never yield to the pressure of pro-migration forces.

The Prime minister confirmed that he had already begun talks with incoming Commission President Ursula von der Leyen about the issue. “There is a fierce struggle between those who oppose migration and those who support it. […]. It is a prime minister’s responsibility to think ahead, so I have a second, third, and fourth option up my sleeve,” the Prime minister continued.

Further developing issue of EU solidarity, Orban said that Hungary is ready to help Italy to cope with immigration. Although it will do so through border protection, not via distribution. “However, there are things that we cannot do,” PM Orbán warned. For example, “we will not help open ports, transport migrants, and distribute these people in Europe.” The position of government was explained in connection to last week’s visit to Rome,

Shifting the topic to the Maltese pact on migration, Prime Minister Viktor Orbán said that the pro-migration forces intend to revive migrant quotas and force them upon EU member states. While Hungary will seek legal avenues to tackle the resurrection of the migrant quota system, PM Orbán expressed hope that the policy can be stopped in the European Council by the heads of state and government there.

There is only one continent that, by yielding to its suicidal tendency, does not protect its own identity. This continent is Europe,” the PM observed towards the end of his remarks, adding that the word distribution is in fact an invitation for immigrants.

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