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Yearbook 2006

2006 ItalyItaly. In January, the country's government announced that the entire Italian force in Iraq would be taken home before the end of the year. Of the nearly 3,000 soldiers, 300 would be taken home the same month, while another 1,000 would be withdrawn in June. The rest of I's military contribution to the US-led coalition in Iraq would be taken home by the end of the year. The government's promise came a few months before the important parliamentary elections in April. The majority of voters were opponents of I's involvement in Iraq. The country's troop strength was the fourth largest in the coalition and Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi had expressed strong support for the invasion of Iraq from its inception in 2003.

2006 Italy

According to CountryAAH, Roberto Calderoli, minister responsible for, among other things, administrative reform, was forced to resign in February after wearing a T-shirt with a cartoon print of the Prophet Muhammad on TV. The T-shirt triggered riots in Benghazi, Libya - at least eleven people were killed and 35 injured when the crowd attacked the Italian consulate in the city. The caricature drawing had previously been published in the Danish newspaper Jyllands-Posten and caused huge protest actions throughout the Muslim world, where it is forbidden to depict the prophet. The T-shirt had been printed at Calderoli's request as a support for freedom of expression and printing. Calderoli was vice-chairman of the anti-immigrant right-wing party Lega Nord, which was part of Berlusconi's government coalition.

In February, Turin hosted the Winter Olympics.

The same month, the electoral movement began before the parliamentary elections. Berlusconi, who led the largest of the government parties, Forza Italia, once again attracted attention when he started the election campaign by saying, “I am the Jesus Christ of politics, a patient victim. I endure everything. I sacrifice myself for everyone. " Challenger to the ruling center - right-wing coalition The Freedom House was a center-left alliance, called the Union, made up of eleven parties and led by former EU Commission President Romano Prodi. Prodi emphasized that the country's economic growth, which has been relatively weak since Berlusconi gained power in 2001, must increase. Many observers questioned the possibility of such a pervasive alliance as the Union to hold together. It included, among other environmentalists, communists, representatives of the gay movement and anti-globalization supporters. As a result, the election manifesto became 380 pages long. When the parliamentary elections were held on April 9-10, the result was the most even in modern Italian history. The Union won over the Freedom House by just 0.1% - 49.8% against 49.7%. As a result of the electoral system, which the Berlusconi government itself introduced in 2005, the Union received 348 seats in Parliament's 630 seats, strongholds, while the House of Liberties had to settle for 281. In the upper house, the Senate, the Union received 158 seats against 156 for the House of Liberties. Berlusconi, who refused to accept the defeat, argued that irregularities had occurred and that votes should be recalculated. On April 19, however, the country's highest court ruled the Union victory in both chambers and gave Prodi the go-ahead to form the next government. Government formation was delayed for weeks by the 85-year-old President Carlo Azeglio Ciampi, 85, who formally appoints the prime minister/head of government, announced that he intends to resign on May 18 and that he wanted his successor to appoint the head of government. On April 29, Berlusconi finally acknowledged the election loss since all his hope was to stop Prodi's entry. President Ciampi, however, asked him to remain until a new president could handle the formation of government.

In May, Prodi promised that Italy would withdraw all soldiers from Iraq. No timetable was presented. That same month, Giorgio Napolitano, 80, was elected new president with support from the Union parties. Napolitano had previously been one of Parliament's seven independent senators in lifetime and newspaper columnist. The next day, he gave Prodi the task of forming a new government. Two days later, Prodi presented a 25-man government with nine ministers from the Union's largest party, the Left Democrats, and seven ministerial posts to the second largest alliance party, the center party La Margherita. In his government statement, Prodi said that the invasion of Iraq had been a "serious mistake" that caused security problems in Italy He reiterated his promise of troop retreat "as soon as technically possible". The last Italian soldiers left Iraq in September.

On April 11, police were able to arrest Bernardo Provenzano, leader of the Cosa Nostra Mafia organization in Sicily, in the Sicilian city of Corleone. Thus, the police's 42-year-long search for the wanted mafia boss was over.

In August, nearly 70 people drowned when two refugee boats capsized off the Italian island of Lampedusa. The island is located between Sicily and Libya and has become the gateway to Europe for thousands of African paperless immigrants. In the first half of 2006, nearly 10,000 Africans arrived in this way to Lampedusa, and when 2,000 refugees arrived in the course of two weeks in August, Italy turned to the EU with a plea for help to persuade Libya to stop the refugee stream. The EU replied that, together with Libya, they began to patrol the waters around Lampedusa with naval vessels and helicopters. In September, Human Rights Watch accused the human rights organization of violating human rights by rejecting thousands of refugees to their sub-Saharan countries, where they risked persecution and torture upon returning home.

On August 22, I offered to contribute 3,000 troops to the planned expansion of the UN peacekeeping force UNIFIL in Lebanon, where a war erupted during the summer between Israel and the Islamic resistance movement Hizbullah.

Great media attention got the fairytale wedding in Italy between Hollywood stars Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes. Many world celebrities in the entertainment industry attended the party held at Odescalchi Castle outside Rome on November 19.

Attention was also given to the images that were wired out at the end of November at the former Prime Minister Berlusconi when he suddenly fainted during a speech in Milan. Life guards had to carry Berlusconi away, which however recovered relatively quickly. The collapse must have been caused by a fall in blood pressure.

In national football, 2006 was an unusually eventful and emotionally saturated year. This spring's big bout scandal in Serie A, where several of the top clubs were involved, made football fans despair. The Italian success at the World Cup in Germany became something of an establishment for a broken football nation and culminated in national euphoria after the final victory against France on July 9. The mutiny became public in early May when it leaked information that the club's director of Juventus, Luciano Moggi, was trying to influence judges and union representatives through pressure and bribery. It soon became apparent that several clubs were involved and that the cheating has been going on for several years. Moggi and the entire Juventus board resigned, as did the chairman and vice chairman of the Italian Football Association, who were also involved. For the clubs, the penalty was felt.

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