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European Journal

Italy: The L'Aquila debacle

Five years ago, an earthquake devastated the city of L’Aquila in central Italy. Reconstruction since then has been lagging and much of the city is still a construction site.

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More than 300 people died in the L’Aquila earthquake, and tens of thousands lost their homes. Meanwhile many of the buildings that then-prime minister Silvio Berlusconi inaugurated with such fanfare are already crumbling. Corruption and fraud is also rampant. A number of local politicians have been arrested and more people are under investigation. The Italian mafia is also said to be involved.