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Landslide in Italy Kills at Least 7, Including Newborn  


Workers clear mud and debris from a street after heavy rainfall triggered deadly landslides, in Casamicciola, on the southern Italian island of Ischia, Nov. 27, 2022.

Italian rescue workers have found at least seven bodies, including that of a newborn child, after a landslide on the island of Ischia, officials said Sunday.

The island received 126 millimeters (nearly 5 inches) of rain in six hours, triggering a massive landslide early Saturday, officials said.

Authorities said at least five others were injured and another five remain missing. More than 200 people in the town of Casamicciola also were displaced by the mass of mud and debris that tore through the port city.

The victims, including the newborn boy, were identified as the infant boy’s parents, a 5-year-old girl and her 11-year-old brother, a 31-year-old island resident and a Bulgarian tourist, The Associated Press reported.

Naples prefect Claudio Palomba told a news conference that dozens of emergency workers rushed to the island while rescue divers searched the waters off the coast. The debris pushed several vehicles into the sea.

Ischia, which has a population of 62,000 people, is a volcanic island about 30 kilometers (19 miles) from Naples. Tourists are drawn to the island’s thermal baths and picturesque coastline.

Officials said the rainfall — the heaviest in 20 years — loosened a chunk of mountainside and the risk of further landslides remained high.

Luca Cari, the spokesman for Italian firefighters, told RAI state TV that rescuers were having to walk to the affected area.

Italian Premier Giorgia Meloni, who was elected just a month ago, said, “The government expresses its closeness to the citizens, mayors and towns of the island of Ischia, and thanks the rescue workers searching for the victims.”

The Italian government, which met in an urgent Cabinet meeting Sunday, declared a state of emergency for the island, earmarking nearly $2.1 million for the rescue and to restore public services.

Some material for this report came from The Associated Press and Reuters.