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Isola Sarda Newsletters
year 2001

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Summary of the year
January 2001

February 2001

March 2001

April 2001

May 2001

June 2001

July 2001

August 2001

September 2001

October 2001

November 2001

December 2001

 

THE YEAR 2001 IN SARDINIA - A YEAR OF "ISOLA SARDA" NEWSLETTERS
2001 has ended.  Hurray for 2001!  It's time to take stock of the past twelve months.  The "Isola Sarda" Newsletter, a weekly summary of the most important events occurring in Sardinia, can help us to remember how this past year, which is about to come to an end, has been.
At the beginning of 2001, the news of the moment was the "Mad Cow" epidemic.  Luckily, this worrying phenomenon touched our Region only marginally and notwithstanding thousands of inspections, only one case of infection was verified.  Unfortunately, however, our Island featured prominently in the outbreak of another infection.  Although harmless to human beings, it affected the sheep farms very badly. Tens of thousands of heads of sheep were slaughtered because of the so-called "Blue Tongue Syndrome" and the entire breeding sector was brought to its knees.  The vaccination of the animals, which could have at least reduced the damage, will only just be carried out with much delay during 2002.
From a meteorological point of view, Winter and Spring were rather wet.  The Island's 40 water basins gathered some rather positive statistics if compared with those recorded during certain drought-ridden years in the past.  The real drawback, if these statistics are compared to seasonal averages, was the Autumn period or rather what should have been Autumn and instead ended up being a continuation of Summer.  Never in living memory have an October and November been so hot as in 2001, evidently a sign that seasonal patterns are really changing.
With regard to the economy, 2001 witnessed the continuing ascent of Tiscali, which established itself as the national leader of the so-called "new market" companies.  At the same time, it expanded to become a European company through the purchase of a number of companies on the Continent.
2001 will be remembered as the year of the "Parco Geominerario" [geo-mining park].  The hard battle fought by the workers (and by Regional Councillor Pinna), who locked themselves in the mines as a sign of protest, eventuated in the clearance of some bureaucratic red tape and the final approval for the go-ahead to this important park.  It is hoped that this will represent a new way of managing the economy in Sardinia and that it will clear the way to the development of the Gennargentu National Park (put on hold by the Sardinians themselves) and of other "Regional Parks".
What featured most prominently from April to December was news about the important so-called "Continuita' Territoriale", that is to say the long-held dream for Sardinians to be able to take advantage of reasonable fares for their trips to the mainland.  After a number of ups and downs and an experiment that involved an international tender for the allocation of the routes to the airlines, there were many controversies, appeals, discussions and threats but in the end it was a cause for a New Year celebration.  The first discounted flights took off.
There were also positive moves with regard to maritime links.  A new operator entered into the market on the Cagliari-Civitavecchia and Olbia-Leghorn and new ferries like the Tirrenia Lines "Bithia" on the Porto Torres-Genoa route.
Still on the subject of the economy, 2001 was going to be the year in which Cagliari's "Porto Canale" project was definitely going to be launched.  The project was to be a massive one, which would have taken 20 years to complete.  Instead, the port had hardly any freight movements during the year, even thought the first cargo ship did arrive in February.
The "Cartiera" factory in Arbatax is another ailing industrial centre.  The Piemonte-based "Nebiolo" group purchased it and a new start-up in production is expected in 2002.
On the political front, elections were held in May and 27 representatives from the Island were elected to the national parliament.  Of these, 16 are from an alliance of centre-right parties and eleven from the centre-right.  The centre-right alliance also had a majority win in the mayoral elections held in the most important municipalities on the Island.  In October the Regional Council suffered a crisis and this led to Mario Floris' resignation and the election of Mauro Pili, the Island's heir apparent to Silvio Berlusconi.
2001 was a negative year with regard to the protection of the natural environment.  It began in May with the decimation of flamingo nests caused by stray dogs in the Molentargius pond and then in Summer, human beings carried on with this vandalistic behaviour.  We then witnessed the now usual slaughter of dolphins carried out by fishermen without scruples.  As well, there was the theft of the very, very fine sand from the beaches of Is Aruttas and the vandalism of natural monuments on the coast of Baunei.  And last but not least, there was the incredible tourist who tried to leave the beach in Calasetta with a specimen of the Caretta Caretta sea turtle under his arm.  So as to remind us that it isn't only the tourists who behave badly, it was a bunch of local hooligans who caused the death of young man of 22 by throwing rocks at passing cars at Arzachena.  Furthermore, we shouldn't forget 24-year-old Vittorio Greco, the young man who lost his life trying to save two Galtellì boys who were having difficulties in the sea off the Golfo di Orosei.
The demolition of the Baia delle Ginestre in Teulada in June raised some controversies.   It led to the restoration of legality and a warning was issued not indulge in anything similar in the future.  However, it has also led to unemployment in a depressed area and it has created an environmental blot on the landscape because the rubble is still there on show for all to see.
There were still numerous forest fires this year but luckily, no one was killed and the number of hectares destroyed wasn't particularly high.
In 2001 there was another increase in the acts of violence in the Barbagia area, which included numerous criminal acts.  Fortunately there were no kidnappings during the year but there has been an increase in hold-ups, both of private citizens and banks.  The latter, in particular, were attacked on numerous occasions with the so-called "excavator" system whereby the robbers destroy the actual structure containing the automatic teller and go escape with the entire "Bancomat" in tow.
Sardinian culture and its language in particular was the subject of debate during the year.  The "Lingua Sarda Unificata" (LSU) [Unified Sardinian Language], a language primarily based on the Lugodorese was presented as a possible candidate in the attempt to create a single language for the entire Island.  We don't know whether this proposal will have a large following but the first objections have already been lodged, particularly from the Campidano area, in defence of the other versions of the Sardinian language.
2001 was a year of mixed fortunes for Island sport.  Soccer is the most popular sport but for the Cagliari team it was a very negative year.  It began the year with great hopes of being promoted to the top championship league only to find itself relegated to the insignificant placings in the middle of the B League championship.  The new championship began even worse and the Cagliari team is now involved in a battle to avoid relegation to the C1 League in the next championship round.  In the C League, the Torres team managed a good showing by coming close in the play-offs for promotion to the B League.  In the current championship, it started off badly but it is now in clear recovery.  The Dinamo Sassari basketball team was constantly in the lead in the B1 League but it failed miserably in its effort go gain promotion to the First Division.  Rays of hope come from the Torres Women's Soccer Team.  The ladies from Sassari have won their umpteenth national championship shield.
Finally, it wasn't exactly a fantastic year for our Isola Sarda site.  The Internet has changed compared to the pioneer times when we first started our activities.  Today, there is greater interest in the ephemeral and the futile, whilst our site always and only deals with the culture, the nature and the people of Sardinia, which is certainly not the most fashionable of subjects.  Its content is made up of contributions of text and images sent in by the visitors to the site.  This year, however, we received less material compared to previous years.  The number of visitors remains high and the messages from our migrants and fans of Sardinia encourage us to carry on.
The Newsletter too, yes the one you are reading at this moment represents for many the only way they can keep informed about events on the Island, thanks to our translators.

Happy New Year to you all!
Giorgio Plazzotta
Isola Sarda Webmaster

JANUARY 2001

7th January

RAIN - BOSA FEARS RIVER TEMO

Finally it's raining in Sardinia and rivers are running again.  The almost dry basins are swelling considerably and in some places, it's rained even too much.  In Planargia, the river Temo has broken its banks and some tributaries, in places have flooded streets.  In Bosa, the houses in the centre of town, risk being invaded by the waters if the level doesn't subside.  To make matters worse, a very strong Mistral wind is slowing down the run-off to the sea.

15th January

PIRATE DRIVER KILLS 2 PEOPLE
Fabrizio Manca and Sandro Caria were killed by a hit-and-run car whilst crossing Viale Monastir on the outskirts of Cagliari.  The driver has since been identified and arrested.

FROM THE MEDICAL WORLD
Two good pieces of news and one bad, from the island's medical world:
- A bone marrow transplant has been performed in Cagliari, on a patient suffering with multiple sclerosis and leukaemia.  This is the third such operation to be executed, in the world.
- At the Brotzu Hospital in Cagliari, for the first time in Sardinia, a double transplant of heart and liver, has been carried out.
- In Modena, a Sardinian surgeon Antonio Pinna, performed the first intestinal transplant to be done in Italy.  Pinna, after having operated in U.S.A., wished to return to Srdinia, but the University Polyclinic of Cagliari, closed its doors in his face.

MORE WATER THAN LAST YEAR
Following the abundant rainfall of December, the 40 basins of Sardinia hold about 100 million cubic meters more water, than last year, and the rainy season is not yet over.  We now await a relaxation in the water restrictions.

ARBOREA - THE TOMB OF THE JUDGES
Documented proof seems to confirm the theory that the remains of the judges of Arborea be buried under the flooring of the Cathedral in Oristano.

ANTI-SMOKING USHERS
Although it is now against the law to smoke in offices and public places, this bad habit continues to flourish in Italy.  In the Quartu Council office, usher Daniele Piras, suffering from emphysema of the lungs, conducts his battle against inveterate smokers.

LUNA POP DEVASTATE CAGLIARI BAR
Unknown and maltreated until a few months ago, the musical group Luna Pop, heroes of Cagliari's New Year's Eve celebrations, (demanding a fee of 500 million lire), after having welcomed the new year on stage, ended the festivities by devastating a bar in the centre of the city.

MAD COW TEST
In order to withstand global competition, the two most important milk producing companies in Sardinina, the 3C of Arborea and the Coopla of Sassari, are ready to merge so as to form a group with a turnover of 200 billion lire circa.

21st January

PORTOVESME -  FEAR AT SEA
A Dutch merchant ship carrying blende and galena, risked capsizing off Portovesme.  The cargo had shifted in the hold, endangering the stability of the vessel.
 
SPORT
In soccer Cagliari beat Genoa 3-0 and Torres won 3-2 in Sicily against Catania.  In basketball, Cagliari was beaten by Sassari who rises victoriously to first category.  In the A2 volley-ball, Cagliari beat Fano.
 
HAPPY ENDING FOR SPELAEOLOGISTS
Imprisoned for 60 hours in the valley of Sa Oche, Oliena, owing to flooding of the entrance, the 5 young cave explorers were never in any serious danger.  There was certain controversy, owing to the high cost their rescue involved.  We, of Isola Sarda invite all excursionists to take care, though the unexpected may always happen.  We admire nature-lovers who wish to explore the outdoors rather than lock themselves away in four walls of cement.
 
LIFE SENTENCE FOR LOTUS ELAN KILLERS
The two brothers frm Assemini who murdered Roberto Baldussi, received life imprisonment and a 20-year sentence respectively.  Their motive was to steal Baldussi's red Lotus Elan.
 
BOMB FACTORY IN DOMUSNOVAS?
The company SEI, awaiting financing, wishes to open a plant for the production of a plastic esplosive.
 
RESEARCH CENTRES REDUCED
Research centres of the CNR in Sardinia, though successful also on an international scale, will however be reduced, four to one.  60 workers risk losing their jobs.
 
VALENTINA UCCHEDDU STOPS JUMPING
Over the past 20years, Valentina Uccheddu has represented the island's sporting panorama.  After having participated in 3 Olympic Games, as many world events and having established the Italian record in the Long Jump on various occasions, she has decided to abandon competitive sports and turn to sports managing.

PLAN  for TUVIXEDDU BEGINS
After waiting 20 years, the Regional council has given the starting signal to recuperate the important archeological area within the urban range of Cagliari.  An overhead roadway  will be built, together with a residential centre for circa 2000 inhabitants.

28th January

'ISOLA SARDA' SITE BECOMES A SCHOOL
The island's leading newspaper, the Unione Sarda, has launched two initiatives concerning the web, namely:  isardinelmondo.it    and  vaisardegna.it.  It pleases us greatly after 4 years since the birth of Isola Sarda (http://isolasarda.com), even others have decided to aim at spreading the Sard nature and culture, and not only the commercial aspects tied to turism.  Vaisardegna.it  is very similar to Isola Sarda, both in content and graphics, but we're not jealous.  Ours is a non-profit enterprise, having no support, and our goals are necessarily limited.  We are happy to be copied and it makes us understand that the road we took 4 years ago, when Internet was not the mass phenomenon it is today, was the right one.  It is another reason for us to continue.  Furthermore, without there being any contact between the two editorials, in the section Recen-siti  of  vaisardegna.it  (http://recensiti.vaisardegna.it/layout3.asp?IDCategoria=1),  you will find a review precisely of our site.  It is a review that expresses flattering judgement and gathers the unique elements of our work, and therefore, the internationalisation and spontaneous cooperation between the users and the network.


HOOLIGAN KILLED BY LABOURER FROM LULA 
Insulted and attacked by a group of hooligans at the Mestre station, Vito Serra, a 50year old  labourer from Lula, reacted to the aggression by fatally stabbing 30year old Massimo Belmonte.  The injured workman is at present in hospital, under guard.
 
LILLI GRUBER'S FATHER DIES
In the attempt to climb a wall in his garden at Torre delle Stelle, the giornalist's father fell onto the rocks.  He died an hour later.
 
A SARDINIAN CARDINAL AFTER 123 YEARS
Monsignor Francesco Pompedda from Ozieri, is one of the 36 new cardinals nominated by the Pope.  Pompedda is at present a "Minister of Justice" in the Vatican.
 
ATTEMPTED SUICIDE
Thanks to the ready intervention of her girlfriends who received a goodbye message on their mobile phone, a High School student from Nuoro was saved from her suicide attempt by swallowing sleeping pills.
 
BSE SYNDROME ALSO IN SARDINIA
Although no cases of 'Mad Cow' disease have yet been proven on the island, the consequences are being felt as with the rest of Europe.  In Arborea, the milk producing capital of Sardinia, there is alarm at the discovery in the silos, of the law-forbidden fodder containing animal-flour arriving from Lombardia.
 

BAD PERIOD FOR NAVIGATION
*On board the Majestic, a Grimaldi ship connecting Genova with Pt.Torres, a fire developed in a refrigerated truck, causing great concern to the 230 passengers, who however, ran no risk.
*Another accident occurred outside the port of Livorno, when  Tirrenia's cargo ferry collided with a fishing vessel.

***** (news of 15th January not published in the previous newsletter) *****

PRISONERS IN GROTTO
Four Sard youths and one Bolivian girl were blocked inside a cave in the Lanaittu valley (Oliena-Nuoro).  The grotto was flooded after a heavy downpour, making it impossible for them to emerge.

SARD EXPORT - RISING
According to the latest reports on exports from various Italian regions, Sardinia registers an excellent percentage in increase (+58%), though it results having the fifth-last place in total value.

MASTER PLAN MEETS MAYORS' APPROVAL
The mayors of Arzachena and Olbia are in favour of the design in regional laws which abolishes the 14 Landscape Plans, opening the road to the new Master Plan.

SPORT :  BAD - CAGLIARI,   GOOD - TORRES
Gloomy period for Cagliari who lost to Terni (1-0) receiving even 2 expulsions.  Following the results of the last matches (only 2 points in the last 4), the Bellotto team lost contact with the first places in classification.  Instead Torres, won 2-1 against Castel di Sangro and is now
in 5th place in classification in the C1 championship.
In Basketball, Cagliari trained by Carosi, won with Mestre, but remains in a delicate spot in classification.  The Bank of Sassari continues its run, winning against Riva del Garda, but only after extra time.

MORE BAD WEATHER
After a brief period of fine weather at the beginning of the new year, it's started raining again, especially in the North of Sardinia.  There has been flooding in Olbia with the Cedrino River breaking its banks.

CAGLIARI - TELEPHONES IN TILT
For the past 10 days, after copious rains at the end of the last year, hundreds of Cagliaritani are
without telephone connection.  Problems for both subscribers and the Telecom.

FEBRUARY 2001

4th february

TENSION OVER GENNARGENTU
The administrators of the Park, met with the provincial councils of Nuoro, the regional council and also the environment minister.  Together they decided to declare themselves against the decree to form a protected oasis of Gennargentu.  The bonds on the Park's area, decided upon in 1998 and suspended until today, are now active.  The local administration, never before having espressed their assent, are revolting against a measure from above, regarding their territories and threaten to hand in their notice.
 
FOREST RANGER KILLED IN CARDEDU
Paolino Mulas, forest ranger of 47yrs old, was murdered in the countryside of Cardedu (Nu).  Whoever killed him, made Mulas kneel; he was then shot in the neck.  The motive for the barbaric crime is unknown.
 
BAD WEATHER
Flooding in Sant'Anna Arresi and the land surrounding the swamps of Porto Pino, also the fraction of Gutturu Saidu.   Chia, the Iglesiente and Bosa have registered the biggest problems caused by heavy rainfall and river overflows.  The temperature fell half way through the week and also Sardinia is swept by the cold wave covering Southern Italy.  Snow has fallen on all the high points of the island and the ski establishments of Bruncu Spina are in full operation.
 
ORISTANO - STUDENTS' HOUSE
Never completed in 30 years, the students' house in Oristano, lies half in ruins.  The Court of Cassation is investigating the wasted billions.  For the first time, a dossier has been discovered, revealing mysteries costing 1,400million lire, while the Council now wishes to spend another 2 billion.
 
MAYOR DELOGU - HANDS IN NOTICE
Cagliari's Mayor, Mariano Delogu has retired from office, in order to participate in the coming elections for the Senate of the Republic.
 
ANOTHER 20 YEARS FOR MATTEO BOE
The ex-fugitive is considered the boss of the gang which kidnapped the Roman builder Giulio De Angelis, in 1988 on the Costa Smeralda.
 
3 SARDS - COMMUTING BANDITS
Only hours after a hold-up, three Sardinian bandits were immobilized.  They flew between Sardinia and Romagna and the Marche, where they held-up small post offices.  Pietro Addis, 48yrs, Nuorese, was the 'look-out', Antonio Loi, 42yrs of Sorradile and Massimiliano Marongiu, 23yrs, of Goni, must all answer to robbery and offences against public property.  All three men are previous offenders.
 
ORTACESUS: REGIONAL KENNELS
"Dogs' Town" has been born in Ortacesus.  It will house strays from the whole of the island.  This is the first "health" kennel in Sardinia.  Our 4-legged friends will find refuge and care from the sick-bay to the operating theatre, from the ward for treating parassites to the kitchen, from rehabilitation areas to the sterilization ward.
 
CAGLIARI JAZZ
Edition number 19 of "Jazz in Sardinia", will offer Cagliari seven appointments from 21 February to 2 April in the Piccolo Auditorium.  There will be Afro-American stars, from James Carter to Carmen Lundy, from Al Foster, who will open the review, to Gonzalo Rubalcaba.  The South-american guitarist / singer Joao Bosco will be performing and for the Italian music, Vinicio Capossela.
 
ART: THE INGRAO COLLECTION
In the Council Gallery of the Public Gardens in Cagliari, completely restored for the occasion, there was the inauguration exposition of masterpieces in paintings of 1900, taken from the Ingrao collection, the Roman collector who died two years ago.

 14th February

CLASHES AT ST.ELIA
For the first time in the history of the city's stadium, violent disputes took place between the Cagliari "ultras" and the police force.  What triggered the fighting was the rivality between the Cagliari - Treviso fans, though the problems began at the ticket office during check-ups.  Some 17 policemen were injured and about 15 people are being questioned.
 
FAMILY'S MIRACULOUS ESCAPE
In the centre of Sennori, a 2-story building crumbled only minutes after its occupants fled.  One of the children in the family noticed the crack in the wall and gave the alarm.
 
FLORIS AGAINST AMATO ON ELECTION DAY
The Sardinian Regional President, Mario Foris, together with his 'Polo' colleagues who administer the region by special statute (Sicily and Friuli), are busy in a dispute with the Government over fixing the date of the coming council elections.  Following example, also our president is trying to create problems for the Government.  The Opposition invites Floris to mind his impelling regional business.
 
LORENZI - FALSE KIDNAPPING
Fourteen months reclusion for simulated offence: Justice has presented the bill to Stefano Lorenzi, the protagonist in the kidnapping farce of last October.
 
5000 YEAR OLD VASE
During the diggings in Masainas, a neolithic vase was found, dating circa five thousand years ago.  The decoration representing the Goddess Turriga, is clearly visible in one clay fragment.
 
NO REPRIEVE FOR MESINA
The Tribunal of Asti refused the request presented by the defensors of Sardinia's most famous bandit, Graziano Mesina.  They begged reprieve of life imprisonment.  Now, the only hope for "Grazianeddu" is to be granted pardon.
 
LURAS WANTED A LYNCHING
Four bandits attempted to hold-up a jeweller's in centre Luras, but warned by a boy who noted the scene, the Carabinieri succeeded in surrounding the building, forcing the bandits to surrender and after, protecting them from a furious crowd.
 
SANTADI: AN ENGLISH COUNCILLOR OF ARTS
The council of Santadi has nominated the 45 year old Londoner, Jeff Grosch, as Councillor of Arts.  He and his wife from Santadi moved to the Sulcis, 14 years ago, in love with the "land of no winter".
 
CAMPANIA'S RUBBISH IN SARDINIA?
Provocation in bad taste comes from leaders on the Sorrentina coast, in urgent trouble over their rubbish disposal.  They suggest "using ferries to transport the garbage to be disposed of in Cagliari.
 
KINSELLA GIVES NOTICE TO TISCALI
James Kinsella gave in his notice yesterday from the position of administrator, delegated by the society born after its fusion with the Dutch World Online.  His reason being through various differences of opinion with the president, Renato Soru.

CAGLIARI - WATER RESTRICTIONS CONTINUE
Notwithstanding the heavy rainfalls of the past two months, Cagliari still suffers water restrictions and the city's supply is still interrupted every day at 3pm.  The Flumendosa basin which provides Cagliari with water, although rising, is still far from its full capacity, not to speak of the numerous leakages in the network of pipes.
 
BRONZE CRUCIFIX ON  MT.TUTTAVISTA
The Council of Galtelli has decided to erect the 12mt.tall bronze statue of Christ, created by the Prof.of Sculpture,  Pedro Terron Manrique of the Universidad Complutense of Madrid.

22nd February

SAILING - WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS
At the end of June, the Golfo degli Angeli will be host to the sixth world sailing championship, for '60 foot' trimarans.  Unofficially, Cagliari is candidate number 1.
 
 
CANAL PORT - FIRST MERCHANT SHIP
After 27 years in construction, Cagliari's canal port received its first merchant ship, a French vessel, 275mts long, carrying foodstuffs.
 
 
PILI UNDER ESCORT
Graffiti threatening Mauro Pili with death, have alarmed Police and political circles to the point of speaking of terrorism.  However, pre-election campaigns are in full swing.
 
CAGLIARI IN MASKS
To the rhythm of the "ratantira", the Carneval celebrations are under way in the streets of the historical centre in Cagliari.
 
SPORT
Cagliari tied 1-1 with Salernitana in a home match.  Now it's only 4 lengths from the promotion zone and must confront 3 difficult matches.  It is a criticaland decisive moment for the Bellotto team, who might have to abandon all hope of returning to the A series.  Also Torres, beaten by Avellino 2-1, is having a bad run, but for the Sassaresi, their aim was not a promotion into B.
 
CAPOTERRA - SHOOTING AGAINST POACHERS
Two Forest Rangers from Capoterra, intent on their anti-poaching service in the St. Lucia area, were injured by a road-pirate car carrying two people.  The Rangers opened fire and hit the car.

MARCH 2001

7th March


MAD COW - ANIMAL FLOUR FOUND IN SARDINIAN CATTLE-FARMS
The local health authority (Aziende Sanitarie Locali - ASL) has targeted a barn in Quartu and a sheep pen in Pula.  During an inspection at Quartu, residues of animal bones and tissue were found.  The packaging, however, listed only vegetable ingredients.

RUN OVER BY CARNEVALE FLOAT
Three boys were seriously injured last Thursday at Calangianus during a Fat Thursday pageant.  On passing through the Piazza, one of the floats took a bad turn by mistake and veered against a wall.

INQUIRY INTO THE S.A.R.A.S. GAS PLANT
The Magistrature in Cagliari is undertaking an inquiry into S.A.R.A.S.' operations.  It appears that production waste residues from a gasification plant utilised for the cogeneration of electrical energy from the refinery in Sarroch were found.  These are highly pollutant materials and it's not clear where and how these would be disposed of.

SARA PALMAS - ITALIAN FEMALE CHAMPION
During the peak indoor athletics championships in Turin, the female athlete from Nuoro won the Italian title in the 1,500 metres and at the same time, established a new Sardinian record (4'15.90 compared to the previous record of 4'18.18).

SARTIGLIA
Out of 64 rides, eleven stars were targeted successfully.  The leader of the race (the Componidori) manages to hit his target with his carved wooden stick (su stoccu) but not before having fallen on some bales of hay which, according to the tradition, represents premonitions which certainly aren't good.  The live telecast of the Sartiglia was transmitted via satellite by the regional channel, Videolina.  A ceremony was also held to celebrate the Sister City partnership between Oristano and the Spanish City of Ciutadella de Minorca where an event similar to the Sartiglia is also held.

SPORT
The Cagliari team, beaten in Verona by the Chievo team 2-1, is sadly distancing itself from the top of the placings list thereby disappointing the fans and the team's President, Cellino, who had replaced coach Bellotto.  Giuseppe Materazzi now sits in Bellotto's place on the Cagliari bench.

Sassari won the Cagliari-Sassari basketball derby in the B1 Series.  In the A2 Series volley, Cagliari beats Piacenza and goes to third place on the placings list.

POLAR TEMPERATURES ON THE WHOLE ISLAND
Winter is about to end but is firing its last bullets.  The other night at Illorai, in the heart of the Goceano, the temperature fell to -10°.

14th March

CLUBBED TO DEATH
Rosa Asole, 66yr old pensioner from Santa Maria Coghinas, was found dead yesterday morning in her home where she lived alone.  Her  lover, 73yr old Luciano Pinna from Cabras confessed to the murder.  Motive: The woman wanted him to marry her.
 
ROME: WHITE SMOKE FOR GEO-MINERAL PARK
After a long tug-of-war between mayors, provinces, ministeries and Region, the Minister Bordon signs the outline for the order to make ready 38 billion lire. There is still a long way to go, but this week a decided step forward has certainly been taken.
 
RUINAS: MAN-HUNT FOR KILLER
After killing 36yr old Pierpaolo Meloni and wounding 46yr old Dino Secci, the presumed murderer Mario Lostia, has gone into hiding.  The Carabinieri have begun a man-hunt in the surrounding countryside.
 
SEUI: ARMED HOLD-UP
After holding-up the Post Office in Seui, the robbers escaped in a car, shooting at random with a rifle to clear the way in the town's centre streets.  Fortunately, no victims, but much fear among passers-by.
 
SPORT
Notwithstanding the change in tecnique, Cagliari continues to disappoint us and seems to have abandoned all vain desire for promotion.  An exciting finale when she tied with Piacenza at St.Elia - no goals.
 
ASSESSOR'S LIFE THREATENED
The regional urbanistic assessor Sergio Milia, has received death-threatening letters.  Among the accusations, apart from his wishing to fill-in the Sard coastline with cement, under the name of Berlusconi, is also that of his being a ''colonizer''.  In Sassari, the right-wing and the left-wing agree: '' It's an episode not to be under-estimated.''
 
CARNIVAL COSTUME CATCHES FIRE
A 12yr old girl from Mamoiada had a dramatic conclusion to her carnival celebrations when her dress caught fire as she entered the piazza in masquerade.  More than 30% of her body was badly burned.  She is now in grave condition in the '' Serious Burns'' ward of the hospital in Genova.
 
CAGLIARI - ALARM IN COURT HOUSE
It is suspected that the excavations for the underground parking in Via Amat, are threatening the foundations o;f the Court House in Cagliari.  Various cracks in the walls have been noticed, in the ceilings and on the floors of the fourth and fifth levels of the new wing.
 
CAR HITS TREE - YOUTH KILLED
A frightful accident in Viale Colombo in Cagliari last night, shortly before 1am. A man was killed and another gravely injured when their car crashed into a tree in front of the Hotel Mediterraneo.
 
PROJECTS FOR CAGLIARI SOCCER
Massimo Cellino, president of Cagliari Soccer, has declared that within two years he shall build a new stadium, smaller and more compact than the present one and quote the society on the Stock Exchange - or else, hand in his resignation.

21st march

ROME "SURRENDERS" EMPLOYMENT OFFICES TO CAGLIARI
Local employment offices will now be under the control of the Regional Government.   This is within the scope of the new powers and jurisdiction negotiated with the Government and approved at the last sitting of the Council of Ministers.
A wave of Federalism which also endows Sardinia with the "regional and local administrative police", as well as the vast sector of services to the people and the community, namely the safeguard of health, social services, education, vocational training, cultural assets and activities, entertainment and sport.

PINNA'S PROTEST HAS ENDED - HE LIVED IN A MINE TUNNEL FOR 4 MONTHS
Regional Councillor, Giampiero Pinna, has ended his protest after having spent four months in the mine at Pozzo Sella.  "Having won the geo-mining park, the battle will continue in the Institutions," he said.

CAGLIARI AND ORISTANO MOVING TO THE JAZZ BEAT
As well as the "Jazz in Sardinia" Festival which is being held successfully at the "Piccolo Auditorium" in Cagliari, other dates with the "greats" of Afro-American music are coming very soon.  The most awaited star is the pianist, Herbie Hancock, who will be on the stage of the "Teatro Municipale" in Cagliari on the 24th.

SPORT
The Cagliari team was beaten (1-0) by the Monza team which was playing with ten men. Its classification continues to be even more critical, the dream of a promotion has vanished, the fans infuriated.  The La Torres team beats the Messina team convincingly, repeating the success it had in the first round and again sees the possibility of competing in the play-offs.
Sassari won the Cagliari-Sassari basketball derby in the B1 Series.

MYSTERY OF THE NINETY-YEAR-OLD FROM AGLIENTU RESOLVED
Silvana Djordjevic, a 25-year-old gipsy ended up in a cell yesterday accused of having killed Raimondo Tiveddu, a pensioner, by stabbing him about ten times with a knife.  It is alleged that the woman had lured the old man with the intention of robbing him but then supposedly killed him, maybe because she was caught in the act.

HE KISSED THE LITTLE GIRLS AS THEY WERE COMING OUT OF SCHOOL
Sexual abuse of minors.  This grave accusation hangs over the head of 27-year-old Cristian Piludu from Selargius.  He has been in Buoncammino since yesterday, accused of having "molested" four little girls, 11 to 14 years old, between October and January at Quartu, Cagliari and Monserrato.

ESCAPES TO SEE THE WORLD AT 77 YEARS OF AGE
He had won the Lotto and abandoned the sheep pen.  tziu Antoni was found in Tuscany whilst roaming around the countryside, without a Lira in his pocket but with his desire to travel still intact.

29th march

ESCAPES FROM BUONCAMMINO IMPERSONATING AN ATTORNEY
It was the first time anyone had broken out of the Cagliari prison.  A Macedonian prisoner managed to escape yesterday, unarmed and without threatening anyone, thereby gaining three hours of unexpected freedom.  He was in fact caught by the guards in piazza Matteotti from where he had hoped to make his way out of Cagliari.

FIRE IN CHURCH SPARES THE FAITHFUL - THE BISHOP: "EXTRAORDINARY INCIDENT"
Officially it is not being declared a miracle but what happened in the church of San Giuseppe in the Rione Italia Parish in Nuoro is somewhat extraordinary.  A fire, which was caused by a short-circuit in the electrical board, suddenly burned itself out without causing any harm to the technicians and without burning the inflammable material which was nearby.  Ten people witnessed the incident.  The Bishop, Pietro Meloni spoke of a "Grace from God".

THEY CAME FROM BOLOGNA TO KILL: LIFE SENTENCE TO THE TWO PIRAS BROTHERS
A life sentence has been confirmed for the two brothers from Siurgus Donigala, Gianni and Antonio Piras.  On the night of 26 May 1998, they killed their fellow town resident with eight gunshots.  The Cagliari Court of Assizes on Appeal issued a sentence, which confirms the original judgement of Murder in the First Degree in its entirety.

"SU CURREU DE S'UNESCO".  THE SARDINIAN LANGUAGE PRESENTS ITSELF TO THE WORLD
The elegant monthly magazine published by the United Nations organisation is produced in 32 different languages, the latest version of which is in the Sardinian "limba".

"CASAR" IN DIRE STRAITS ASKS REGIONAL GOVERNMENT FOR ASSISTANCE
CASA could re-evaluate its decision to stop processing tomatoes.  The General Manager has given a glimmer of hope but has indicated that the final decision depends on some kind of intervention by the Regional Government.  In the meantime, the farmers are becoming more and more concerned.

MARCELLO FOIS IN THE CATALAN LANGUAGE
Marcello Fois' book, "Sempre Caro" has been translated into Catalan and was launched last week in Barcelona during a cultural exhibition.

SPORT
The Cagliari team doesn't know how to win any more.  In a home game with the Sampdoria team it drew 1-1 and now finds itself in eleventh place.  However, enthusiasm surrounds the Torres team, which wins 2-1 away from home against the Viterbo team.  During the D Series games, we continue to see scuffles in the dressing rooms between the teams from Campania and Sardinia.  This week the incidents occurred in Tempio Pausania (SS).

CAGLIARI NO LONGER LOVES ITS TEAM
During the current season, the red and blue team is beating all the negative records as far as attendances at the stadium are concerned.  Until now, the average number of spectators at each match has been 3,891, to which 5,333 subscribers must be added.  This means that an average of 9,224 spectators are present at each match in the Sant'Elia Stadium.

APRIL 2001

9th april

BLUE TONGUE - HOTBEDS ALSO FOUND IN THE CAGLIARI AREA
Alarm all over the Island.  The Regional Government decides today regarding the introduction of an extensive inoculation program.  Two million, four h
undred thousand doses are already available.  These drugs will enable the sheep to be inoculated all over the Island before the Blue Tongue epidemic breaks out again with the arrival of warmer temperatures and with greater virulence compared to last autumn.
THE DESERT IS PUSHING FORWARD IN THE CAMPIDANO AREA
There is little rain, the woods catch fire and thus, more than half of the Island could become a desert.   The Regional Agency for Development and Technical Assistance in Agriculture (ERSAT) and the Regional Agrimeteorological Service (SAR) have given the alarm.  Researchers have discovered that 60% of Sardinia runs a potential medium-high risk of desertification.  The Campidano and Nurra areas and the Ozieri
Plain are on top of the list.  That is without the inclusion of that three percent of land (the coastal areas and the Carloforte and Sant' Antioco Islands as well as the Teulada Peninsula) where the risk factor is in fact very, very high.  It appears that it would only need the smallest of variations in order to compromise the equilibrium of these areas completely.
THE LITTLE CHURCH IN DECIMOPUTZU DEVASTATED
Vandals broke into the little country Church of San Basilio in Decimoputzu, devastating it.  After a few hours, they felt remorse and abandoned a statue of the Madonna, some pieces of bas-relief and unconsecrated hosts in front of a church in Serramanna.
TWO WINS OF TEN BILLION LIRE IN SARDINIA
The two fa
bulous coupons in the "Superenalotto" were bought in Monserrato and Sassari.
TWO FRENCH FERRIES ON THE CAGLIARI-CIVITAVECCHIA ROUTE
Two fast ferries belonging to the French shipping company "Sardinia Ferries" will be operational from June 9 on the Cagliari-Civitavecchia route.  For Tirrenia it means the end of a monopoly which has lasted nearly fifty years.
SOCCER-THE PUBLIC PROSECUTOR'S OFFICE INVESTIGATES TEMPIO TEAM
The Tempio Public Prosecutor's Office is also about to open an investigation.  The ex-President of the Baracca Lugo team has alleged that one of the players on the team from the Romagna Region purposely committed a penalty foul in order to advantage the Tempio team.  This allegedly occurred in the qualification play-offs two years ago and the ex-President claims it was done in order to force him to sell the Club.
SIXTEEN-YEAR-OLD ARRESTED - BOMB
She threw a Molotov bomb at a rival family's apartment at Sant'Elia.
The young girl has been charged for having caused a catastrophe.  Her relatives injured one of the Police Officers in charge of the arrest.
AIAS - EX-CHRISTIAN DEMOCRAT DEPUTY CONVICTED
The AIAS (Italian Association for Assistance to Spastics) scan
dal concluded with four convictions for misappropriation.  The Tribunal in Cagliari yesterday convicted Bruno Randazzo (ex-DC Deputy and current President of the Sardinian Christian Democrat Party).  According to the charges, there were forty billion Lire invested in suspect activities.
SPORT
Cagliari is left far behind and Sassari is high on a pedestal, both in Soccer and Basketball.  In Volleyball, however, it is doing well.  The team is making its way to the play-offs for the A1 Series.  Cagliari also lost in Pistoia even though they played with eight men and had to put up with scandalous refereeing.  The Torres team beats the Palermo team 3-0.  Palermo is on top of the winners list so the win has caused the Torres fans to dream of a promotion to the B Series championship, something which has never been achieved by the Club from Sassari.  Just for a change and for the umpteenth time, one of the D Series teams from the Campania Region was involved in an act of violence and incivility yet again this week.

17th april

THE MOGORO MYSTERY
Giorgio Serra, a young man from Mogoro, disappeared from his home.  After a few days of searching, a disconcerting truth emerges.  The young man is dead.  His body was cut into pieces and taken to the consortium garbage dump in Oristano. The motives for his death are not yet known but Bernardino Atzeni has been arrested and charged for having concealed the corpse.  Investigations continue in order to establish the truth.

SANTA MARGHERITA - THE STOWAWAYS DISEMBARK
Thirty-four Tunisians abandoned on the beach at Perd'e sali by two motorboat operators who have ended up in the prison at Buoncammino.
However, the motorboat operators had not taken the strong Scirocco wind into account.  Consequently, 36 North African stowaways, mostly Tunisians, disembarked at 5 o'clock yesterday morning on the coast of Santa Margherita di Pula.

CARBONIA - SENTENCE OF 19 YEARS REQUESTED FOR EX-MAYOR ACCUSED OF BRIBERY
Hefty sentences have been requested for the seven prominent defendants involved in the "Tangentopoli" case in Carbonia.  The Public Prosecutor has requested a 19-year sentence for ex-Mayor, Ugo Piano, and lesser sentences for Italo Cannas (Dc), ex-Town Councillor; Salvatore Ortu, ex-Council Inspector; the lawyer, Licinio Mastino; ex-Council Inspector, Gianni Murgioni; ex-Area Secretary of Cisl (Italian Confederation of Workers' Unions) Antonello Dessì and ex-Socialist Senator, Paolo Fogu.

POLITICS
You will have noticed that we are not including many items of news regarding the episodes of power play, which have transpired over the last few months and concern the forthcoming elections on May 13.  It is a theatre of the absurd, which we find difficult to comprehend and you probably find yourself in the same situation.  Therefore, we are purposely omitting any reference to these news items.

DESULO - FUGITIVE EXCAPES FROM CARABINIERI GUNFIRE
He escaped capture under fire from the elite Carabinieri group, the "Cacciatori di Sardegna".  It appears that the fugitive is 32 year old, Marco Antonio Deiana from Desulo who is under investigation for his involvement in the bloody hold-up two years ago at the piazza Garibaldi branch of the Banca di Sassari in Cagliari.

CROSS-COUNTRY GRAND PRIX FIDAL 2001 - ALÀ DEI SARDI
- KENYAN, KOSGEI - THREE TIME WINNER
Kenyan, Paul Kosgei has won at Alà dei Sardi for the third consecutive year.  The international meet has now become one of the most important events on the cross-country calendar.

SPORT
The Cagliari team has achieved two consecutive victories.  At home with 2-0 against the Ravenna team which at the moment, is last on the list and yesterday, in Cosenza they won 3-1 against the strong local team.  Brilliant performances but already too late to aspire for a promotion to the next level.  The Torres team joined the other teams in the C Series championship in a rest day yesterday but will be playing an important match against the Savoia team tonight.  Both the Sardinian B1 Series basketball teams were beaten.

CAGLIARI - WORK HAS BEGUN ON THE REFURBISHMENT OF THE GRANITE PAVEMENT IN VIA ROMA
The section of Via Roma, the main street in the centre of Cagliari, which runs along the port area, will be disrupted for at least eight months from May 7.  In fact, work will begin on the refurbishment of the large slabs of granite right after the May 1 Festival. In the meantime, the refurbishment of the little ancient piazza in the Marina district has just been completed and other work is being carried out on the pavements in the district.

GREAT SPANISH ART ON SHOW IN VILLANOVAFORRU  
Villanovaforru is attempting to repeat Marmilla's achievement last year when 200,000 people visited their dinosaur exhibition in the space of a few months.  The town, which is 40 kilometres from Cagliari, will exhibit etchings, engravings, lithographs and sculptures created by Picasso, Mirò, Dali and Goya until September.

"STING" IN CAGLIARI - WILL THE AMPHITHEATRE BE BIG ENOUGH?
The concert is scheduled for July 19.  Perplexity regarding the small number of seats available.
The ex-singer from Police returns to Sardinia after seven years.  In September 1994 he performed in front of 20,000 fans at the Acquedotto in Sassari.

IN LOVE WITH SHARON STONE
Carloforte resident Agostino Pomata has been arrested by the Los Angeles Police in front of Sharon Stone's home.  He told the Officers that he wanted to marry the Hollywood star.  He has been admitted as a patient in a clinic.

AT 92 YEARS OF AGE HE USES A COMPUTER AND WRITES POETRY
Antonio Corongiu of Nuragus is now 92 years old.  At 90 years of age he felt the need to use the computer to write more than one hundred poems in the Sardinian "limba".

22nd april

CAGLIARI - THE CANAL PORT A DUTY FREE ZONE FOR GOODS DESTINED FOR NON-EEC COUNTRIES
The Minister for Regional Affairs, Agazio Loiero's signature finally put an end to a wait, which has lasted many years - the Duty Free Zone for Cagliari.  The decree, which deals with the canal port, will have advantageous spin-offs for container traffic.  The ships arriving from non-EEC countries will be able to call at the island capital without going through Customs.  However, there is one condition.  The goods transhipped via the dock at Macchiareddu must not be destined for countries belonging to the EEC.

CAGLIARI - LAND OFFICE HEIST SCORES 7 BILLION LIRE
Thieves carry out sensational heist at the Land Office in the Financial Centre in via Vesalio.  Three hundred thousand Revenue Stamps collected for cadastral registrations to the value of seven billion Lire were stolen.  All the Stamps have supposedly been rendered null and void with the Tax Agency's stamp but evidently, there is someone who knows how to bring those stamps back to life.

STILL NO VOTE IN TROUBLED TOWNS
On the Island there is a triangle where democracy has disappeared.  The State has withdrawn its presence in Lula, Oniferi and Onanì.  Here the people don't vote and the concept of freedom is being threatened.  The polling booths in Lula are deserted for the eighteenth time in nine long years.  For Oniferi and Onanì it's the second time that the seats remain closed.  Consensus is not being organised and neither lists nor candidates are being presented.  It is where stonewalling is a common tactic and where a silencer is placed on dissent, first with threatening letters and then with rounds of gunfire.

PLANET-INTERKOM PURCHASED BY TISCALI FOR 150 BILLION LIRE
New acquisition by Tiscali.  The company, headed up by Renato Soru, has bought the German Internet provider, Planet-Interkom for a total exchange value of 150 billion Lire.

ONE HUNDRED THOUSAND TOURISTS IN THE RAIN BUT EASTER IS SUNNY
Throngs of people arrive in Sardinia regardless of the inclement weather in the period leading up to Easter.
The tourists arrived on the Island in aeroplanes and ferries, activating the entire hospitality industry.
Everything on the Emerald Coast is booked out and Alghero was also crowded for the Holy Week rites.  The German tourists chose the South, whilst in the Nuoro area there was snow.

SPORT
Cagliari continues to do well in the B Series, winning at home against Venezia, which is now on top of the winners list.
The Torres team remains in the top placings even though it only drew (2-2) in the home game against the Nocera team.
The Volley Cagliari team scored an important win in the match against the Latina team.  The win is valid for the promotion to the A1 Series.  Now they will have to face the challenge of the play-off away from home.

DRUGS VALUED AT TWO BILLION LIRE - COUPLE ARRESTED AT DISEMBARCATION
The Carabinieri stationed at Quartu stopped them whilst still in their car which was loaded with cocaine.  They were driving off the ferry, which had just come in from Civitavecchia.
The drugs were found during a search of the vehicle. The couple was then handcuffed.  Value of the drugs: two billion Lire.

MAY 2001

2nd May

AIRLINES - DISCOUNT FARES ON FLIGHTS TO THE ISLAND AVAILABLE WITHIN TWO MONTHS
The tender documents containing the offers for discounted fares have been opened.  These fares will apply to Sardinians who fly from Cagliari, Alghero and Olbia to Rome and Milan.  Airlines included on the list of tenderers are Alitalia, Meridiana, Volare and Air One.  The Commission now has two months to decide.  If no appeals are lodged by the middle of June, the winners of the tender will be announced at the beginning of the summer season and the new regime of discounted fares will be put in place.  The winners of the individual sectors will have to guarantee fares, which vary from £65,800 to £82,400 (one way).

OLBIA - "ALEX THE RUSSIAN" CAUGHT
Alexander Zhucov, was arrested at Olbia Airport as he was heading for his villa on the Emerald Coast on Easter Saturday.  The petroleum industry "boss" is accused of being involved in an illegal activity, which involves the colossal international traffic of weapons destined for the Balkans.  Part of the arsenal, which included 30,000 Kalashnikov rifles and was seized in 1999 in the Otranto Canal, is apparently stored in custody in a military ammunition depot in La Maddalena.

TOURISM - GO-AHEAD TO SPEND 22 BILLION IN THREE YEARS
22 billion have been allocated for the re-launch of tourism activity to the Island.
A plan, developed by the Tourism Council, allocates 13 billion Lire to the provincial tourism bodies, and 9 billion major events, i.e., Sant'Efisio, Sartiglia and Redentore Festivals, and £500,000 for the computerisation of the local tourism bodies, which will have a further billion for the following two years.

MAYOR QUENCHES TOWN'S THIRST BUT IS CONVICTED FOR UNAUTHORISED CONSTRUCTION
The Mayor of Montresta, a small town in the Marghine mountains, found himself being jailed for ten days for having ordered the construction of some "illegal" wells which were an essential element in the provision of water to the town.  The town's leading citizen, Giovanni Cadeddu, declares himself a victim of the bureaucracy of incompetence.

FOSSILS OF A DEER WHICH LIVED ONE HUNDRED THOUSAND YEARS AGO FOUND ON THE BEACH
The fossil remains of a deer, which lived one hundred thousand years ago, were found on a beach off the coast of Gonnesa.  They were discovered by palaeontologist, Gian Luigi Pillola and are waiting to be examined scientifically.  Years ago, the bones of a "dwarf elephant" were found in the same area.

SCIOLA'S TERRACOTTAS - EXHIBITION IN PAVIA
Pinuccio Sciola's famous terracotta figurines will be on exhibit until May 6 in Pavia.  The exhibition called "Genti de bidda mia"  (People from my town) will be held in the ancient Sala dell'Annunziata.

ITALY-ENGLAND EXHIBITION IN CAGLIARI
Female photographers, painters and engraving artists.  Two years ago, they left Sardinia and landed in England where they were immediately defined as "The Mutants".  In 1999, Rosanna D'Alessandro, Caterina Lai, Anna Marceddu, Anna Maria Pillosu, Anna Saba, Maria Spissu Nilson e Gabriella Viana, prepared an exhibition which, with only a few images, could illustrate social research findings surrounding the theme of cultural, economic, linguistic mutation.
The exhibition entitled, "Ritorno al presente" (Return to the Present) will be open to the public from now until May 6 at the "Cittadella dei Musei" in Cagliari.
Entry is free and exhibition times are from 10.00 a.m. to 1.00 p.m. and 5.00 p.m. to 7.30 p.m.

7th May

SASSARI - FIRE IN ILLEGALLY OCCUPIED SCHOOL
Tragedy nearly struck in a school illegally occupied by about fifty people in the Rizzeddu District.  It is believed that the fire was caused by a short circuit in the building's electrical system.  The operators from the Fire Department saved twenty homeless families.

CAGLIARI - DISCOVERY OF AREA OF THE BRAIN AFFECTED BY COCAINE
The researchers at the Centro Nazionale Ricerche (National Research Centre) Centre for Neuropharmacology in Cagliari have made a discovery destined to revolutionise research in general.  They have identified that part of the brain, called the shell of the nucleus accumbens, affected by drugs like cocaine and ecstasy. The announcement was made by Professor Gaetano Di Chiara, Dean of the Faculty of Pharmacy and leader of the research team at the Centro Nazionale Ricerche.

OGLIASTRA - SIX POLICEMEN AMBUSHED
Six policemen from the police station in Lanusei escaped an ambush whilst retrieving two stolen cars in the Elini countryside.  The bandits blocked the policemen's road.  The policemen quickly jumped out of their cars and began shooting in order to take cover.  The outlaws decided to vanish without responding to the policemen's fire.

"SA DIE" RETURNS TO SARDINIA - THEATRE AND CONCERT IN CAGLIARI
"Sa Die de sa Sardigna" was also celebrated on May1, together with the "Festival of Saint Efisio".  Celebrations were also held in Cagliari, Sassari, Nuoro, Oristano, Sanluri, Santa Teresa and Bono.  Events in the regional capital included a theatrical performance in piazza Indipendenza and a concert at the Bastione.

UNABLE TO FIND VIRGINS FOR THE FESTIVAL OF SAN GIOVANNI
Virginity remains a fundamental requirement for aspiring "traccheras" in the Festival of San Giovanni.  The organising committee of the Festival held in July in Quartu has for the last few years, been forced to recruit little girls.  They are the only ones who can give a guarantee of virginity.  The Festival, which dates back centuries, will be held again on July 28 in the little church of Sant'Andrea.

AGREEMENT - SARDINIA-CORSICA
An agreement has been signed between the Universities of Sardinia and Malta.  The agreement refers to a joint project, which will tackle the fire problem.  The joint project entails a scientific research study on the causes of the fires, wind patterns, the characteristics of the terrain where underbrush occurs and meteorological problems.

CAGLIARI - SALGADO EXHIBITION
Salgado is to exhibit two hundred photos where he shows his humanist vision of reality.  The exhibition entitled, "La Mano dell'Uomo" will be held in the Ghetto di Cagliari (via Santa Croce) Workers and opens today.  Not the machines but whomever controls them, whether they are computers or simple mixers of sand and cement.  With his photography, he plays with facial expressions, muscles, poverty and lives in many cases much unhappier than ours but less neurotic.  The exhibition is not to be missed by those who would like an intelligent outing in the historic centre of Cagliari.  Until June 30, from 9.30 a.m. to 1.00 p.m. and from 4.30 p.m. to 8.00 p.m.

SPORT
In the C Series, the Torres team beat the Vis Pesaro all'Acquedotto (3-1), maintaining their hopes alive for a chance to be contenders for promotion to the B Series.  In the B Series, Cagliari was beaten in a home game by Empoli (2-3), disappointing the team's fans yet again.

14th May

SANT'EFISIO ENTERS THE THIRD MILLENNIUM
On May 1, faith and folklore combined in the streets of Cagliari to present a show, which is unique in the world.  Everything was done according to tradition.  Attending the golden coach holding the "Holy Martyr" were the oxen.  The "miliziani" (militia) provided an armed guard and an emotional "Alter Nos" (delegate of the Mayor) acted out the ancient script to perfection.  The following day, at Nora, there was the procession on the sea.

NUORO - CIPE PASSES RESPONSIBILITY FOR NEWSPRINT MANUFACTURER "ARBATAX" TO "NEBIOLO" GROUP BASED IN PIEMONTE
The "Nuova Cartiera di Arbatax" has been resurrected.  Yesterday in Rome, the Centre for International Private Enterprise (CIPE), assigned the financing of a special project contract to the value of over 40 billion Lire out of the 75 billion Lire envisaged by the finance provider.  The contract was granted to Nebiolo Printech, a company based in Piemonte, which is to regenerate the factory and re-employing the majority of its former employees.  The news was welcomed with enthusiasm both by the labour unions and in political circles.

DISCOUNTED FLIGHTS
The committee charged with the responsibility of analysing and evaluating offers received in the international tender for the provision of discounted airline services has met for the first time.  However, the envelopes will be opened on May 14.  According to indiscretions, it is believed that Air One has offered a discount of 25% on the contribution that the Government will assign to the winner of the tender.    At the same time, it is believed that Meridiana has offered 16% and Alitalia and Volare  4%.

DISCOUNTS MAY MEAN LESS DESTINATIONS
Discounted fares and relevant destinations will be in place by June.  However, Sardinians may also get a nasty surprise.  The airlines are ready to abandon (or reduce) services to and from the Island which were not included in the international tender for the provision of air transport in the area.  Services mainly at risk are those to and from Verona, Turin, Bologna and Pisa.

72 YEAR OLD GRANDMOTHER - OPERATES SUPERMARKET FOR DRUGS
Assunta Ghisu, a seemingly homely, 72 year-old pensioner, was arrested yesterday in Giba for possession and trafficking in drugs.  She had transformed her house into a drug emporium.

THE "MONUMENTS WEEK-END" IS A SUCCESS
The re-opening of the "Castle of San Michele" to the public saw thousands of people from Cagliari participating in a weekend of culture and history amongst the city's monuments.  The visitors appreciated the exhibitions held at the "Lazzaretto" and the "Ghetto degli Ebrei but young people were interested in the "Torri Pisane".

CRIME IN IGLESIAS - CARS IN FLAMES - ONE OF THE VICTIMS KILLS HIM
He was killed for having set fire to a car.  It is believed that this is the machination to a crime committed very close to Iglesias, in the dam at Punta Gennarta.  49 year-old Antonello Grassi from Iglesias is in jail under suspicion of having murdered 23 year-old, Silvano Deias.  On December 21 last year, the young man had set fire to Grassi's car, which he had parked in front of his house.

CAGLIARI - MASSIMINO IS THE FIRST KING OF THE "PALIO DI SANT'EFISIO"
Massimo Coghe, the jockey from Norbello who won the Palio in Siena three times, is the first King of the "Palio di Sant'Efisio".  He ran the winning sprint at the Hippodrome in Cagliari in front of a crowd of ten thousand people.  The event was a great success.

SPORT
The Torres team lost a game in Ascoli, which it would have deserved to win.  With this defeat, it must say a definite good-bye to any dreams it may have had for a promotion to the B Series championship.
The Dinamo basketball team suffered two crushing defeats against the Cefalù team, which was deemed to be the favourite on paper.  The Dinamo team will now be downgraded out of the B1 Series championship.

20th May

ELECTIONS IN SARDINIA
Elections were also held in Sardinia for the renewal of the National Parliament and a certain number of mayoral positions.  In the national elections, Sardinia confirmed the advancement of the parties of the centre-right to the detriment of the centre-left.  In the first round, the mayoral positions were won by the candidates of the centre-right in Cagliari and Quartu S'Elena and the candidate from the centre-left won in Monserrato whilst in Olbia (not yet confirmed), Carbonia, Porto Torres, Capoterra and Assemini, they will go to a second ballot.

FLAMINGOS FLEE FROM MOLENTARGIUS
An ecological disaster has occurred in the Molentargius marshes, one of the few wetlands in Europe where flamingos go to nest.  Hundreds of birds have abandoned the marshes and the nests because of attacks from a pack of stray dogs.  The strays were subsequently caught but by then the damage had been done.  Many of the flamingos, which had left the Molentargius marshes, found refuge in another one of Cagliari's marshes, at Santa Gilla.

MEMBERS OF THE INDEPENDENCE MOVEMENT UNLOAD RUBBISH AT MONTECITORIO
A group of Sardinian militants for independence unloaded a van full of rubbish in the piazza at Montecitorio in Rome.  The men, members of "Sardigna Natzione", tried to take some large boxes marked with the symbol for radioactivity into the Chamber of Deputies but were stopped by the Police and Carabinieri.  According to the explanation provided to the Officers and curious passers-by, the reason for the demonstration was to protest against the importation of waste-products into Sardinia, which had been produced elsewhere and were, in many cases, toxic and dangerous.

ANOTHER YEAR AND THE PAPER MILL WILL RE-COMMENCE PRODUCTION
Having received the go-ahead from CIPE (Centre for International Private Enterprise), the paper mill in Arbatax is ready to turn on its machinery again.  At the end of summer, technicians and other employees will begin work on the re-activation of the production process, which has been stationary for the last nine years.

GESTURI - WOMAN TIED TO THE BED WITH WIRE AND MURDERED
A brutal homicide in an armed hold-up has occurred in Gesturi.  83 year-old pensioner, Vittoria Cau was attacked and killed with a blow to the head.  Before being murdered the woman had been tied to the bed with some wire.

SOCCER - SASSARI WOMENS' TEAM - ITALIAN CHAMPIONS
Celebrations in Sassari for the girls of the Torres team, which won the 'A' Series trophy two days before the end of the championship.  It is the third trophy in the history of the red and blue team and their second consecutive one after their win last year.

HOW TO STUDY THE BIBLE IN SARDINIAN VIA THE INTERNET
Christians in Sardinia are invited to translate the Bible into their own language.  The project is featured on the Web at http://tiscalinet.it/sufueddu (or www.sufueddu.org). The venture began six months ago in the weekly Oristano Diocesan magazine "Vita Nostra".  It is now being extended to the hundreds of passionate devotees of "Sa Limba" who have been pressing for some time now for the Church to become an active protagonist in the project.

30th May

ELECTIONS IN SARDINIA - 16 SEATS TO THE CENTRE-RIGHT ("POLO") AND 11 TO THE CENTRE-LEFT ("ULIVO")
Sardinia has elected 27 parliamentarians: 16 seats to the "Polo" Party and 11 to the "Ulivo" Party.  Another two Sardinians, Oliviero Diliberto of the Italian Communists' Party (PDCI) and Gabriella Pinto of the "Forza Italia" Party (FI), who ran for election in the Emilia Romagna and Lombardy Regions respectively, will have a seat in Montecitorio.

THE SARDINIAN SEA CONTINUES TO BE THE MOST BEAUTIFUL IN ITALY
Italian environmentalist association, "Legambiente", has compiled the annual classification of the most beautiful coastlines of Italy.  All the first-class beaches have been published in their new "Guida Blu".  As always, Sardinia holds the record.  The Mediterranean island gained full marks for the unique characteristics of its coast and was crowned "Queen".  The Touring Club defined 483 municipalities as "Seaside Resorts".  Of these, 205 were selected by Legambiente and its local representative bodies because they combine the benefits of quality tourism with a marine and coastal environment, the conservation of which is maintained at an optimum level.  Furthermore, ten locations have been classified as "Queen of Summer" with a maximum ranking of 5 "Sails".  Included in this group are Villasimius and Orosei in Sardinia.  Legambiente and the Touring Club have classified 25 beaches as being near to perfection with a ranking of 4 "Sails".  Amongst these are Maddalena, Alghero and Bosa.
  Sardinia is the region

with the greatest number of beaches ranked at 4 and 5 "Sails".  From the 35 beaches selected, 9 are in Sardinia.

RED BRIBES IN CARBONIA - THREE CONVICTIONS
This is the outcome of the trial held in the case of the "Tangentopoli Rossa", i.e., illegal contributions to the ex-Communist Party in Carbonia, which ended yesterday.
Both ex-Mayor, Ugo Piano of the Democratic Party of the Left (PDS) and ex-Deputy Mayor, Giovanni Murgioni, of the Italian Socialist Party (PSI) were sentenced to four years in prison and ex-Town Councillor, Salvatore Ortu of the Italian Socialist Party (PSI) to five years and six months.

FONNI AND MAMOIADA - HUNT FOR THE FUGITIVES
A massive Police operation has been carried out in the Nuoro area in the search for dangerous fugitives.  They are previous offenders implicated in a series of homicides and robberies.  Nearly one hundred Police officers combed the countryside surrounding the two towns in the Barbagia area inch by inch.  In any event, the investigators are maintaining a very strict silence regarding the results of the operation.

NUORO - MORANDI'S LIGHTS - THIRTY SAMPLES OF HIS WORK ON SHOW
The Museum of Contemporary Art in Nuoro is hosting an exhibition called "A crystalline Purity" which includes thirty of Giorgio Morandi's works.  The exhibition will continue until July 1.

THE "VESPA" - A PIECE OF ITALIAN HISTORY ON SHOW
The "Emmezeta" Shopping Mall in San Sperate is holding a large and impressive exhibition dedicated to the "Vespa" and its legend.  The show includes many vintage scale models, a large number of photographs and a few "life-sized Vespa" scooters.  These are all a reminder of how we used to drive in the "Fifties".  The exhibition is being held until the end of May.

JUNE 2001


3 giugno

ELECTIONS - THE FINAL ACT
A second ballot was held in those Comunes where no one candidate had achieved a majority in the elections two weeks ago.  The centre-right prevailed in Olbia and Porto Torres whilst Carbonia, Assemini and Capoterra will have a Mayor from the centre-left.

G8 RISKS ISOLATING SARDINIA
The fear of upheaval during the "G8 Summit", which will be held in Genoa at the end of July, also risks having a negative impact on Sardinia during one of the busiest periods of the tourist season.  In order to protect members of the G8 from the protests of the so-called "People of Seattle", the main city in the Liguria region will in fact be completely isolated from July 18 to 23.  As far as Sardinia is concerned, the consequences will be that the entire transport system will be disrupted.  Alternative solutions are being examined, like the transfer of the berthing arrangements for the ferries to the commercial area or other ports like Savona or La Spezia.

OPEN WINERIES - SPRINGTIME IN A GLASS
Coming from Tempio and Serdiana and passing through Cabras and Jerzu, last Sunday thousands of people participated in the "Wineries Open Day Festival".  It was an event for oenophilists, simple connoisseurs and those who believe they can link the taste of a well-balanced red wine to the image of an ancient basilica.  Wine tastings were held in Canonau and Vermentino, Carignano, Nuragus and Vernaccia.

NUORO - COURT HEARING IN THE STREET
A hearing involving an elderly man had to be organised in the street in front of the courthouse in Nuoro because of a faulty elevator.  Realising that the pensioner could not face the steep stairs which separated him from the courtroom, the judge, the prosecutor and the man's lawyer made their way over to the open area in front of the building.  They then interrogated the man whilst he sat in a car which belonged to one of his daughters.

TWO MEN FROM ORGOSOLO MASTERMINDED KIDNAPPING
The Public Prosecutor began his closing statement in the trial for the kidnapping of Silvia Melis.  In a surprise move and in front the judges in the Courts at Lanusei, he proceeded to accuse Antonio Maria Marini and Pasqualino Rubanu from Orgosolo of having organised the abduction of the young woman from Tortoli.  It has also been alleged that "Zia Gra" alias Grazia Marine played a "fundamental" role in the crime.

TWENTY-YEAR-OLD MODEL - DRUG COURIER
Maria Elena Caria, a twenty-year-old model from Cagliari, was arrested at Olbia Airport by the Carabinieri from the Operations Division in Cagliari.  She had just arrived from Milan and was carrying twenty kilos of hashish in her suitcase.

WELSHMAN, JOE CALZAGHE, GIVES HIS WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP BELT TO HIS GRANDFATHER FROM BANCALI
There is a man in Bancali, a suburb on the outskirts of Sassari, who received a surprise gift last Sunday.  It is the World Boxing Championship Belt in the WBO Super Middleweight Category.  It was brought to him from Wales by his grandson, Joe Calzaghe.

TABLE TENNIS - CAGLIARI DERBY FOR CHAMPIONSHIP SHIELD
The derby match between the Marcozzi team from Cagliari and the Cagliari team will be the decider in the 2001 Table Tennis Championship.  The challenge tournament will begin on June 2.  The return match is scheduled for June 9 and if necessary, a play off will be held on June 16.  The great favourite is the Marcozzi team, which is the outgoing champion, and has already won three Italian titles (1990, 1992 and 2000).

17th June

THREE CONVICTIONS FOR THE KIDNAPPING OF SILVIA MELIS
After a trial, which lasted a year and six hours of deliberation, the Judges in the Court in Lanusei issued their verdict against the four accused of the kidnapping of Silvia Melis.  There were three convictions and one acquittal.  The most serious conviction was that of Antonio Maria Marini who was sentenced to thirty years in jail.  Pasqualino Rubano was sentenced to twenty-six years and Grazia Marine to twenty-five years and six months.

FAKE INVALIDS - 58 ARE BEING INVESTIGATED
The maxi-investigation of fake invalids is finally reaching the halls of justice.  Nine years after the commencement of the investigation, the Public Prosecutor's Office has in fact requested that the 58 people under investigation be committed for trial.  Amongst those committed there are doctors, recipients of the pensions and the brains of the operation, who having received bribes, organised for pensions to be paid to people who were not entitled to them.

THIRTY MILLION ITALIAN HOLIDAYMAKERS - SARDINIA IS ALWAYS AMONGST THE MOST SOUGHT-AFTER DESTINATIONS
More than 30 million Italians, five million more than last year, are intending to go on vacation this Summer.  Most of them (67.5%) will choose Italy, where the most sought-after destinations are in the Emilia Romagna and Sardinia regions.  These statistics are highlighted in the 2001 report prepared and presented yesterday in Rome by Unioncamere-ISNART (Italian Institute of Tourism Research) and international market research company, ACNielsen C.R.A.  Other sought-after regions in Italy also include Tuscany, Lazio and Sicily.

DOMUSNOVAS - IN FIVE HUNDRED AGAINST THE BOMBS
Five hundred people participated in a protest march, organised by the various "No to Bombs" co-ordinating committees in Domusnovas, demanding jobs, peace and solidarity.  At the same time, they were protesting against a project that will see the allocation of public funds to SEI Esplosivi Industriali Spa of Brescia for the manufacture of aeronautical bombs.  The manufacture of these bombs is due to commence shortly in the Sulcis area.

SUBMARINE WHICH SANK IN THE GULF OF CAGLIARI FILMED
The wreck of the Italian submarine "Malachite", which sank in 1943 after being hit by an enemy torpedo, has been discovered in the Gulf of Cagliari at a depth of 120 metres.  Some deep-sea divers from Cagliari made the exceptional find, which has also been documented on film.

SPORT
The Series B Championship concluded last Sunday with yet another Cagliari defeat, this time against Genoa.  This last Championship was without doubt one of the most disappointing ever.  The red and blue team had been at the top positions on the list only for the first few days of play.  It then produced mediocre performances only to find itself in mediocre positions on the list.  Some satisfaction, however, was gained from the so-called "minor" sports.  In table tennis, the Marcozzi team from Cagliari won the tricolour shield when it beat another team from Cagliari.  In women's soccer, the Torres team, first won the shield and then scored the Italian Cup.  In water polo, the Rari Nantes Cagliari team is topping the list in the A2 Championship.

A MILLION MICE IN CAGLIARI
The alarm has sounded.  There are mice in Cagliari.  The historical parts of Cagliari (Castello, Marina and Stampace) to the residential districts (Monte Urpinu and San Benedetto) are literally being "invaded".  There are supposedly one million mice in the city.  In order to keep the problem under control; a national average of four mice per inhabitant is considered the norm.  However, in Cagliari, the average is nearly double.  The blame has been placed on the sewerage and the road works but also on the lack of preventative measures.  The areas worst hit are Marina and Stampace.

CAGLIARI - BRAWL IN PIAZZA YENNE
Last Friday, a violent brawl broke out in Piazza Yenne in Cagliari.  The Piazza is highly patronised all year round but during these hot Summer evenings in particular.  What appeared to be an outright duel was fought out between two groups, with broken chairs, kicking, punching and the breaking of bottles on the adversaries' heads.

ART SHOW AT THE "CENTRO PIRANDELLO" IN CAGLIARI, UNESCO EXHIBITION AT TEULADA
"Specchio Delle Mie Brame" [Mirror of my Desires] is the name of the series of self-portraits by Josephine Sassu.  A selection of her works will be on exhibit until June 22 at the "Centro Pirandello" in Cagliari.

The UNESCO Club of Cagliari in conjunction with "Progetto Sardegna - L'Isola dei Sardi" have organised a craft show which features fine lined of the sea and traditional embroidery from Teulada.  Hosted by Litos at Tuerra (at Km 71 of the coast road for Chia) at Teulada.

28 June

USE OF MOBILE PHONES AND INTERNET ON THE INCREASE IN ITALY
There is a strong growth in access to the Internet in homes and a considerable increase in the use of mobile phones.  This is the snapshot of the Italian family and its use of means of communication presented by ISTAT (Italian National Statistical Institute) in its Annual Report.  The report highlights how the number of families with one or more mobile phones has increased from 27% to 65% in the last three years.  ISTAT adds that the number of families with two mobile phones has grown from 17% to 31% whilst those with three has gone from 2% to 8%.  The same applies to the Internet.  Whilst 2% of families were connected to the Net in 1997, by 2000 the numbers reached 15%.

PISANU - MINISTER IN NEW GOVERNMENT
Giuseppe Pisanu is the only Sardinian Minister in the Government.  He has been assigned the new portfolio called the "Department for the Implementation of the Government's Programme".  Since he had been a very faithful Berlusconi follower for many years, the newly-elected Council President felt he couldn't exclude him from a Ministerial appointment and thus he created a Government Department especially for him.

FURTEI, GOLD MINE BOMBED
A bomb exploded on one of the windowsills of the Town Hall in Furtei, causing minimal damage.  Responsibility for the terrorist attack was later claimed via a fax, which contained the following message, "Furtei does not want the mines, no to gold mining in Sardinia".

LITTLE BOY SUFFERS FROM LARON SYNDROME - FATHER'S APPEAL
Giuseppe Marongiu is a five-year-old boy from Lanusei.  He suffers from a very rare illness called Laron Syndrome, which doesn't allow the growth hormone to carry out its natural function.  The pharmaceutical company that has been experimenting with the only drug capable of helping the boy to grow has stopped manufacturing it because it's not profitable.  The boy's parents have launched an appeal to the drug manufacturer, asking them not to stop.

CORAL DIVER HELPS HIS FRIEND AND IS STRUCK DOWN BY EMBOLISM
Sixty-six-year-old coral worker from Alassio lost his life struck down by an embolism yesterday in the Saint Antioch Sea just outside Capo Sperone.  His shipmates attempted to rescue him but it was useless.  By the time the patrol boat from the Harbour Master's Office arrived it was too late, the man was dead.

AUCTION - EX-TOWN HALL MAIN ENTRANCE DOOR RIDDLED WITH BULLET HOLES
The bullet holes are the object of a cult following.  Thus the main entrance door of the ex-Town Hall at Orgosolo is much sought-after by buyers.  "There will not be an auction," says the Mayor.  "If a good offer is made, then we will see."

JULY 2001

3rd July

A HOTEL IN TEULADA KNOCKED DOWN BY SCRAPERS
The "Baia delle Ginestre" Hotel, built in violation of urban planning regulations, has been knocked down by the scrapers.  Tourists are up in arms, having already booked their holidays and so are the employees of the
hotel who have lost their jobs.  The World Wildlife Fund and the Italian environmental organisation, Legambiente are referring to the incident as "tourists and employees being used as hostages to property".

NEW FERRY IN OPERATION
Shipping company, "Tirrenia" has also lost its monopoly on the Cagliari-Civitavecchia route.  The thrice weekly, Sardinia Ferries service was launched yesterday.  Sardinia Ferries' General Manager, Euan Lonmon has announced discounts and special fares on the ferry, "Sardinia Nova" during the Summer season.

NUORO - HOSPITALS AND HOMES THREATENED BY FIRE
The inferno reaches the city.  Hectares of forest on the Biscollai hillside in Nuoro (common target for fire-bugs every Summer) have gone up in smoke. The flames had managed to reach the "San Francesco" and "Zonchello" hospitals, the "Satta" technical school and nearby homes.

LITTLE BOY FALLS FROM A YACHT AND DROWNS
Tragedy hits a family from the Piedmont region whilst on an outing.  A little boy, barely three-years-old and momentarily away from his parents' care, fell from a yacht and drowned.  The accident occurred late yesterday morning in the Maddalena Arcipelago.

BINGO TO TAKE OFF IN SARDINIA TOO
Gambling fever has also arrived in Sardinia.  It is anticipated that Bingo will commence within the year with four halls in Cagliari and one hall each in Assemini, Oristano, Nuoro, Sassari, Alghero and Olbia.  It is anticipated that the game of "Tombola" (as it is called in Italy) will also be very successful in Italy just as it has proven to be in other European countries, involving not only avid gamblers but also entire families.

15th July

A SHOT IS FIRED - TRAGEDY AT THE ELMAS BASE
Emanuele Lutzu, an aviator from Aggius, was killed during a discharge of bullets fired accidentally by one of his fellow soldiers, 20 year-old Fabio Casula from Villamar.  The tragedy occurred in one of the rooms in the guards' quarters at the Military Airport of the 30th Squadron.  The young men, who were due to be discharged from National Service at the end of the month, were in the process of taking a souvenir "good-bye" photo.  One of them inserted the cartridge and the gun went off.

THIS IS THE NEW MASTER PLAN
The Managers of the "Starwood Hotel Group" have presented the second version of the Master Plan to the Arzachena and Olbia town planning administrators and have obtained near to unanimous approval.  The Plan consists of an overall investment of over two billion Lire for the construction of hotels, serviced holiday apartments and a new golf course.  It will take twenty years to complete the project and will create 15,000 jobs.  The proposal will be presented to the Regional Government by the end of the month.

DRINKS DIESEL FUEL AND IS POISONED TO DEATH
Matteo Manconi, barely two years old, from Nurallao, died in hospital after four days of agony.  He had swallowed what was in fact a small quantity of fuel.  The accident occurred in a matter of seconds whilst the little boy was playing.  After four days of intense medical care, the child died.

A FIRE CUTS THE "CARLO FELICE" IN TWO - TRAFFIC STOPS - CARS LINED UP FOR KILOMETRES
A violent fire cut the Carlo Felice highway and the railway line at Bornova in two.  The flames burned nearly 400 hectares of land, requiring the intervention of seven aircraft and hundreds of people on the ground.  A Fire Brigade helicopter was forced to land on the highway in order to assist a patient in an ambulance blocked by the traffic.

OROSEI - MAN DROWNS WHILE TRYING TO SAVE TWO YOUNG BROTHERS
24-year-old Vittorio Greco from Rome and holidaying at Cala Gonone lost his life in the sea at Osala near Orosei.  He had braved the waves in order to save two young brothers (12 and 15-years-old) from Galtellì.  The victim did not hesitate to dive into the sea, together with some other bathers and the boys' father but he did not manage to return to shore.

30 july

TWO ROUTES EACH FOR ALITALIA AND MERIDIANA
Two routes go to Alitalia, two go to Meridiana, one goes to Volare, one is not allocated and no routes have been allocated to Airone.  First of all, Alitalia has managed to score the most sought after route, which is the lucrative Cagliari-Rome route and it will also service the Alghero- Rome sector.  Meridiana will have the exclusive rights to services from Olbia Airport to Rome and also to Milan.
Volare will have to relinquish the Cagliari-Rome route but will have exclusive rights to the Cagliari-Milan sector.

SARDINIA CONTINUES TO BURN
Every Summer and this Summer is no different, forest fires in Sardinia are have become common and therefore a terrible daily occurrence.  We won't be telling you about all the fires in our Isola Sarda Newsletter but we will report the most serious ones.  This week, the Pinus Village, which is ten kilometres from Pula, was evacuated by the Fire Department because the flames were threatening it.  Also, three hotels (two at the Lotzorai Marina and one a few kilometres from Villagrande) were evacuated by the Carabinieri as a precautionary measure.  The worst fire flared up on the South Coast on the road to Chia, just a few metres from the Domusdemaria turnoff.  There was panic in Nuoro.  Scores of brushfires in the countryside surrounding Nuoro made up a single front from Orani to Ottana, from Oniferi to Orotelli and to Orune.

"FORESTA" - THE SARDINIAN TEST TUBE JENNET
There are only three hundred specimens of the grey donkey left in Sardinia.  However, the species will not become extinct.  The birth of a grey jennet called "Foresta" last May via the "rent-a-uterus" technique will ensure its survival.  It's the first case of assisted reproduction carried out successfully at the "Istituto di Incremento Ippico" [the Institute for Equine Development] in Ozieri.

SARDINIAN SEAS PASS THE TEST
"Legambiente's Goletta" [the Italian environmental body's green schooner] has concluded its circumnavigation of the Sardinian coastline where it carried out an examination of the quality of its waters.  Apart from some sporadic cases where a slight presence of coli bacillus was found at Foce del Tirso and the Lido di Capoterra, they found Sardinian seas to be in perfect health.

"ANTI-GLOBAL" GROUPS PROTEST AT PORTO TORRES WHARVES
There were at least a thousand people.  They had come from all over Sardinia to send a message to Genoa.  They had come to ask the Government not to take away their right to give voice to their dissent.  They had come to ask permission to enter the "Forbidden City" in which the manipulators of planetary power will meet to decide the major strategies that will condition everyone's lives.  In Genoa to propose a possible "New World".  There were no incidents or any tense moments.  The Sardinian "no-globals" marched slowly from the Piazza at the old "Mercato Civico" to the Port area, reasserting their identity as a civilised and non-violent movement.

A "LEPPA" WORTHY OF A "GUINESS" RECORD
Messrs. Tedde and Decandia from Oschiri have made the biggest jack-knife in the world.  It is 5.5 metres long.  The huge "resolza" [local style of knife] is on show at the Marina di Portisco in the Costa Smeralda.

23-HOUR ODYSSEY ON THE SHIP BOUND FOR CAGLIARI
It was an odyssey for the 620 passengers who boarded the Tirrenia vessel at Civitavecchia bound for Cagliari at 6.00 p.m. on Thursday.  Because of the bad weather, the ship sailed at 10.30 p.m. and arrived at its destination at 5.00 p.m. the following day.

IDEA - THE THERMAL BATHS AT MOLENTARGIUS
The labour unions would like to launch thermal spa resort in the Cagliari saltpans.  The proposal originates from discussions held at a conference organised by CGIL, CISL and UIL [Italian Federation of Trade Unions].  Enhancing the value of the lagoon area as a tourism destination would provide an excellent opportunity to create employment.

PUNIC CITADEL DISCOVERED AT ARCHEOLOGICAL DIGS
The first part of a Punic settlement dating back to the 5th Century BC has been found a short distance from the historical centre of Olbia.  For the archaeologists involved in the digs in the Gallurian city, it is the most important discovery to date.

SEX, CHAT AND SARDINIA
The word "Sardegna" is fourth on the list of most "clicked" words by Italians on the Altavista search engine.  The words "sex", "porno" and "chat" are more popular but they are practically unbeatable.  Altavista's Internet Observer function that monitors the "keywords" most used by Italian Web "surfers" each month researched the data for the list.

CULTURE - THE SARDINIAN LANGUAGE SURVIVES THANKS TO ITS GEOGRAPHICAL LOCATION
Did you know that currently there are six thousand languages?  It would seem an enormous number but in reality, the phenomenon is purely a virtual one.  Since it is true that there are six thousand languages in the world it is likewise true that fifteen of these (fifteen out of six thousand) are spoken by 50% of people on the planet.

OLBIA - CATTLE FARMERS' RAGE EXPLODES
A few hundred farmers, coming from all parts of Sardinia, held a demonstration in the port area at Olbia, causing disruption and delays in freighter operations.  The demonstration already announced last week, stems from the grave crisis gripping the beef market.  The marketing of this commodity has been hindered for some months due to severe public health restrictions adopted against the "Blue Tongue Virus" and BSE (Mad Cow Disease).

SEVERE SENTENCES TO ARMED ROBBERS ALSO SUSPECTED OF SUBVERSIVE ACTIVITIES
Judges in the Tempio courts have passed heavy sentences for the failed jewellery heist in Luras last February.  The head of the band of thieves, Michele De Roma, was condemned to seven years and four months in prison.  At the same time, the other three leaders, Giovanni Nurra, Salvatore Pais and Riccardo Sotgia, were given prison sentences of five years and four months.  All four were found to be guilty of armed hold-up and the unlawful possession of war arms.  Investigations into their suspected subversive activities are still under way.

"GOLETTA VERDE" IN SARDINIA
The Italian Environmental Association's [Legambiente] "Goletta Verde" [Green Schooner] is making its way towards the South of Sardinia and as usual, controversy follows.  After its initial presentation at Alghero, where it was reported that the general condition of Sardinian waters is good, Legambiente's schooner arrived in Bosa. Today, the officials on the schooner took a stand against the delays in the effective functioning of the Island reserves.  Cited in particular was their disapproval of an application made by the Commune of Cabras that a "moratorium" be placed on restrictions that exist in the protected areas of the Sinis Peninsula and the Mal di Ventre Island.

RELEASE OF ONE BILLION LIRE OF "C.I.P.E." FUNDS
One billion Lire have been allocated for investments in tourism, agriculture and infrastructure.  Fifteen projects are to be funded, creating 4,000 new jobs.  The C.I.P.E. [Center for International Private Enterprise] has given the go-ahead to the planned projects proposed in advance by the Regional Government.

LAUNCH OF NEW FERRY FOR PORTO TORRES
The name of the first of the twin-sister ships is "Bithia" (the other's name will be "Janas").  At normal speed they will enable a passenger to travel the Genoa-Porto Torres route in 7.5 hours, compared to the 9 hours it takes at present. The "Bithia", which was built in the Fincantieri shipyard at Castellammare di Stabia, was handed over officially yesterday to Tirrenia Navigazione's top management.  After the "Janas" is delivered in February next year and will subsequently go into service, the "Bithia" will be able to make the crossing from Liguria to Sardinia with maximum speeds of over 31 knots.  The "Bithia", which is 214 metres long and over 26 metres wide, is capable of transporting a maximum of 2,800 passengers and crew, as well as 900 cars.  On board there are 320 cabins, which sleep up to 1,200 people, together with seating accommodation for more than 1,000.  To complete the package, there are two restaurants (one of which is self-service), a party lounge with dance floor, a bar, shops and a cinema.

IRISH COUPLE DIE WHILST ON HOLIDAY
An Irish tourist couple's holiday in Alghero has ended in tragedy.  Barbara Mary Revees and her husband, Shane Gerard O'Brien, 25 and 32-years-old drowned yesterday afternoon.  Inexplicably, the incident occurred in the Hotel Oasis pool in front of about ten people who were sunbathing in the area surrounding it.  Because of the mysterious nature of the deaths, an investigation is being carried out to determine whether it was suicide or through natural causes.

DISCOVERED IN A SHEEP PEN - HAMMER USED IN EUTHANASIA
Euthanasia was practiced in Sardinia until the second half of the 19th Century.  It was accepted, approved of and in fact, requested as a matter of course.  The custom has once again come to light in Gallura with the discovery of one of the instruments of death, all evidence of the existence of which had been lost.  Pier Giacomo Pala, the creator and curator of the Ethnographic Museum in Luras found the hammer in a sheep pen.

SORU COMPANY FOREGOES UMTS
Tiscali S.p.A. has foregone its involvement with UMTS [Universal Mobile Telecommunications System].  The announcement was made in conjunction with Hutchison Wampoa.  The Cagliari-based provider is not intending to exercise its option to bring its investment up to 25% ownership of Hi3g (formerly Andala), making it one of the four consortiums to obtain licences in Italy.

AUGUST 2001

5th August

Check Isola Sarda's home page http://www.isolasarda.com/home.htm this week and you will find the "Indynetwork" logo.  Click on the icon to activate this new service.  Indynetwork is a well thought-out index of the free services promoted by liberal, independent and non-profit entities, which are committed on the "Globalisation" front.  Indynetwork indexes the main resources available on the Internet without duplicating what thousands of other people are already doing.  However, it enables you to access these resources from various access points and are targeted towards specific services or different points of view, always and in any case free-thinking, independent and not for profit.

We always receive many messages of thanks for the work we are doing with our Isola Sarda Newsletter.  The English language version is particularly appreciated because for many people who don't speak Italian, it represents one of the few, if not the only means of remaining in contact with the land they love.  Once again, I would like to thank Helen and Adriana who have enabled us to provide this important service.

We also think about the many people who are not aware of the Newsletter's existence and are not able to take advantage of this facility.  Therefore, we would kindly ask you to forward this to all the people on your mailing list who you feel might be interested and recommend that they become subscribers.
Giorgio Plazzotta
Responsible Officer, Isola Sarda

*** PRESS REVIEW ***

SWALLOWED BY A WELL FULL OF SLUDGE
Two factory workers from Porto Torres have died.  The fumes emitted from meat-slaughter waste killed them.  The tragedy occurred in an animal feed mill in the industrial area of the city.  The Technical Manager of the processing plant, who had intervened in an effort to rescue the men, has been admitted to hospital and his condition is critical.

FOREST FIRES - UP-DATE
In the final report drawn up by the Corpo Forestale [State Forest Ranger Corps] regarding the damages caused by forest fires since January, Sardinia is at the top of the list of "red-hot" Regions.  No less than 6,371 hectares of land went up in smoke in Sardinia in the period from 1 January to 22 July.  Calabria (3,252 hectares) and Sicily (3,100 hectares) follow.  Compared to the same period in 2000, the number of forest fires in Italy has decreased by 21%, whilst the overall area affected by fires has decreased by 50%.

MONTE ARCOSU - ALSO AFFECTED BY FIRE
UTA - The arsonists are not relinquishing their hold and carry on with their terrorist acts.  Last week in Guttureddu, within the World Wildlife Fund's Oasis Nature Reserve at Monte Arcosu, no less than ten hectares of Mediterranean scrub made up of, above all, juniper and arbutus trees, went up in smoke.  There was a considerable deployment of men and vehicles from the Forest Ranger Corps, the Government Forestry body, the "Compagnia Barracellare" [Sardinia's unique Municipal Guards] and the Civil Protection unit.

TAX EVASION - BLITZ BY THE "GUARDIA DI FINANZA"
A campaign has been launched by the Guardia di Finanza [Italy's financial police] to counteract the illegal "black payment" of rents phenomenon.  It concerns investment properties situated in the principal seaside locations on the coast of the Province of Oristano.  It has also been confirmed that numerous owners of investment properties have fallen into the net.  These people had rented out the properties but subsequently did not proceed to register the contracts with the Ufficio Entrate [Revenue Office] of the Ministero delle Finanze [Ministry of Finance].

CAGLIARI STANDS AS CANDIDATE TO HOST THE MEDITERRANEAN GAMES
Cagliari has officially presented its candidature for the 2009 Mediterranean Games to the CONI [Italian National Olympic Committee].  All the preliminary research must be ready by October.  The objective is the Games and the world spotlight is on the city.  Cagliari will have to beat its fellow contenders: Palermo, Catania, Genoa, Grosseto, Latina, Naples, Pescara, Rimini, Trieste and Venice.

EASTERN-BLOCK BEAUTIES FORCED TO PROSTITUTE THEMSELVES IN NIGHT-CLUBS
Following a raid by the Police in the North of Sardinia, fourteen nightclubs were "sealed off" and 18 managers were arrested.  Sexual favours were being offered for Lit.150,000 and a bottle of champagne.

FIUME SANTO GOES TO THE SPANISH
Endesa, the main electricity provider in Spain, has won the tender for Elettrogen, the first ENEL "genco" [power generating company] to make its debut on the market.  The Spanish will pay pretty much "through the nose" for their entry ticket into the Italian market.  It will cost them Lit.7,150 billion for the 5,500 MW produced by the eight power plants in Fiume Santo, Monfalcone, Ostiglia, Tavazzano and Trapani, together with the hydro-electric plants at Terni, Crotone, and Catanzaro.  All in all, the Fiume Santo plant guarantees an output of 880 MW.

WITH BLACK ARM BANDS AS A SIGN OF MOURNING
There were at least 250 people in front of the Prefettura [Prefecture] in Piazza d'Italia in Cagliari.  They had congregated spontaneously to express their dissent against the recent incidents in Genoa.  They were also there to remember 23 year-old Carlo Giuliani who died on the first day of violent clashes between demonstrators and law enforcement officers.  Relaxed, calm and nearly silent, they congregated to say no to any kind of violence and repression and to reiterate their dissent against poverty in the world.

GALTELLI' - A PLAQUE IN THE PIAZZA IN MEMORY OF VITTORIO GRECO
His heroic gesture two weeks ago had touched everyone.  On July 7 last, 24 year-old Vittorio Greco from Rome did not hesitate one second when he dived into the sea at Osalla, attempting to save the life of two young boys from Galtelli' and he lost his life in the process.  The Galtelli' Town Council decided unanimously to dedicate a moment of silence and prayer to the young victim.  Furthermore, it was also decided that a plaque in memory of the young man will be put up in the town's main Piazza.

"OUR CHILDREN WILL NOT SPEAK LOGUDORESE!"
The group of experts commissioned by the Regional Government has concluded its project and has produced a report, which would align the Sardinian language to its Lugodorese variant.  However, Limba enthusiasts living in the Campidano area do not like the idea.  The issue re-emerged during the crowded launch of the book "Limba, Lingua e Language" written by Sardinia's most authoritative experts in the field.

S.O.S. FROM SAHARIAN BOY FOUND AT PORTO PINO
The Western Saharian boy's message had been attached to a coloured balloon, which eventually deflated and landed on the beach at Porto Pino.  That cry for help launched to the wind was picked up by one of his contemporaries, Federico Gessa of Sant'Anna Arresi whilst he was playing on the beach.  Inside the balloon there was a small, rolled-up piece of paper with a message written in Spanish.  The author of the message had released it to the wind whilst in Catalogna, Spain on a short vacation with a few friends.  Those carefree days did not however stop him from thinking about his predicament.  He lives in a refugee camp, hoping to one day be able to live freely in his homeland, Western Sahara that has been occupied by the «Marruecos» (Moroccans) for more than twenty-six years.

«THE "CARABINIERI" ARE S..T» - SINGER CHARGED
He thought he could involve the crowd.  However, the young people left indignantly when he announced from the stage that "it was those s   t Carabinieri who killed people during the G8 in Genoa".  Amongst the spectators who did not appreciate the Kenze Neke's band artist's statement, there was also the Maresciallo dei Carabinieri [senior Officer in the Corps] who joined him up on the stage, took his particulars and charged him for "vilipendio" [disrespect for a public institution].

HOSPITAL IN A TUB FOR TURTLES IN BAD SHAPE
CABRAS - Due to the increasing number of turtles from the sea off the Sinis Peninsula that need to be cared for by a veterinarian, it would now seem a real necessity to provide them with a specialised care centre.  These splendid specimens are not necessarily in need of medical assistance because they have been injured or badly treated but more so because they are found to be in a very poor state of health.
Management of the marine reserve "Penisola del Sinis-Isola di Mal di Ventre" has submitted a number of projects to the Ministry for the Environment.  Amongst these projects is a proposal for the construction of a Care Centre for the sea turtles.

15th august

UNIFICATION AND STANDARDISATION OF "SA LIMBA"
The committee of experts nominated by the Sardinian regional government has prepared a set of proposals called "Limba Sarda Unificada (LSU)".  The package summarises the basic set of rules for the standardisation of the Sardinian language, i.e., spelling, phonetics, morphology and lexicon.  The Office of the Department of Public Education publication is a 50-page document.  The LSU is a language of reference, the model of a language, based on the analysis of local variants of the Sardinian language and on the classification of its fundamental exceptions.  Finally, it is also based on the selection, case by case, of a model that is, overall, amply representative of and compatible with local versions.

SARDINIA «OCCUPIED» BY HOLIDAYMAKERS
Olbia has set records.  More than 120,000 people arrived at the Isola Bianca Terminal wharves and the Costa Smeralda airport during the first week-end in August.  It's impossible to find even one vacancy, at least until Ferragosto [15 August].  At the same time, it's "all sold out" departing from the Gallura ports where the traffic is normal in any case.  It's a sheer boom for the tourism industry on the South-Eastern coast of Sardinia - from Villasimius to Muravera - where, for the last few days, a 100% occupancy rate has been registered in hotels, camping grounds, farm house accommodation and investment properties.

BEACH RESORTS BOOM ON THE ISLAND - VISITORS INCREASE BY 200%
Compared to 2000, the first two Summer months have shown a definitive increase in the number of visitors to Sardinia's beaches.  The number of arrivals on Sardinia's coastline has shown particular growth (more than 20%).  Following behind are Emilia Romagna and Campania where they have increased by more than 15%.  A net downturn, however, has been noted for Sicily where the result is minus 15%.

NULVI (SS) - WOODEN CROSS AND FOUR 18TH CENTURY CANDELABRAS STOLEN
Sacrilegious thieves at work in the parish of the Assunta [Madonna of the Assumption].  Some precious candelabras and an antique wooden Christ from a crucifix, all of which date back to the 18th century, mysteriously disappeared recently.   The items were part of the rich artistic heritage of the Church, which is dedicated to the holy patron of Nulvi.  The figure of Christ was literally extracted from its cross, which stood on the pulpit of the main altar.

GO-AHEAD GIVEN TO LAW: BIRTH OF SARDINIAN CONSTITUENT ASSEMBLY
The Regional Government has approved the proposal for a constitutional law. The law will enable the Region to set up the Sardinian Constituent Assembly, which will be responsible for the drafting of the new Statute.  The law will now go to Parliament.

ORISTANO: LONELINESS BECOMES A TRAGEDY FOR A PENSIONER
He had been dead for three months but no one was aware of it.  Carlo Pinna, 73-year-old pensioner, was found dead in his home at Oristano.  He had died in the silence of his loneliness.

SENSORS IN THE GROTTOES IN SEARCH OF THE MONK SEAL
It seemed like it had disappeared from Italian waters but last September a Monk Seal was sighted in the protected marine area at Capo Carbonara.  Since then the area is under strict surveillance by ICRAM [Central Institute for Scientific and Technological Research Applied to the Sea attached to the Ministry for the Environment]. A few weeks ago, ICRAM undertook a project, which will hopefully single out all the grottoes that could house specimens of this rare animal.  Inside the grottoes they will place Infra Red sensors that will signal the animal's
presence.

TISCALI GOES SHOPPING IN EUROPE
Tiscali will purchase Spanish Internet Service Provider, "Inicia Comunicaciones" from the "Grupo PRISA" publishing group for a sum of 8.2 million Euro in cash.  The Cagliari company has also purchased "Yukom Sa", one of the leading ISPs and portals in Belgium from British Communication PIC (BT) and the Banque Bruxelles Lambert (BBL) and another ISP from British company, Tiny.

EPIDEMIC RESURFACES BETWEEN SINISCOLA AND POSADA
SINISCOLA.  At least eight cases of «Blue tongue» have been reported at Siniscola, one of which was recorded at Posada.  The alarm was given after a number of tests were made amongst the goat-farms in the area.  Farmers immediately raised voices of complaint about the situation.  In fact, it seems that the hotbeds of the epidemic have originated from farms located in swamplands.  Furthermore, three of the reported cases are said to be a repetition of episodes in locations already recorded last year.  Therefore, the 2000 disinfestation was a waste of time.

MOLOTOV BOMBS - A FACTORY ON FIRE
A few nights ago there was a serious bomb attack on the buildings that belong to the Azienda Italiana Depuratori in Quartucciu.  The company's General Manager, Maria Grazia Massimino is also the leading Sardinian businesswoman.  Persons unknown hurled some incendiary bombs into the company's factory building and in three hours machinery and vehicles were destroyed.

MAMOIADA - FORTY COUPLES COMPETE IN THE REGIONAL "MORRA" TOURNAMENT
Forty couples participated in the Regional Morra Tournament of the Madonna del Carmine of Mamoiada recently.  They competed in teams of four in elimination games for sixteen to the finals, which were held that same morning over the two hours that were available.
First prize, which consisted of the trophy and one million Lire went to Cottu and Mazzette, the couple from Ollolai.

SEPTEMBER 2001

2nd September

INFANTRYMEN FROM THE "BRIGATA SASSARY" DEPART FROM ALGHERO
The first 70 infantrymen from the "Brigata Sassari" departed from Alghero Airport headed for Macedonia as part of the NATO "Essential Harvest" Mission.
The "Sassari" contingent will be made up of a total of nearly 500 soldiers out of the 700 men Italy has placed at NATO's disposal.  Amongst the departing volunteers, more than 80% have already had experience in the Balkans.

NUORO - THREE THOUSAND COSTUMES FOR THE "SAGRA DEL REDENTORE" [Festival of Christ the Redeemer] CELEBRATING THE FESTIVAL'S CENTENARY.
As a celebration of its Centenary this year and under the auspices of the Regional Government, a vast program of events has been arranged.  It consists of cultural, musical and folkloric shows, comprehensive socio-productive and sporting displays which from July to late September, will include about a hundred different activities and big shows.  In any event, 29 August remains the highlight of the Festival.  This year we will return to "su connottu" [the old ways].  In fact, the Mass will be celebrated on the stone altar at the foot of the statue and the Archbishop of Cagliari, Ottorino Alberti will officiate.  Furthermore, Cardinal Mario Francesco Pompedda will celebrate the Pontifical Mass together with the Sardinian Bishops at 6.00 p.m. in the Municipal Amphitheatre.
The Euro-Mediterranean Festival of Street Theatre is scheduled for 3-6 September.  Groups of performers from Switzerland, Germany, France and Norway as well as from the Continent will participate.  A Piano Competition will be held from 15-19 September in the Auditorium of the "Museo Regionale del Costume e Delle Tradizioni Popolari" [Museum of Local Costumes and Traditions], which promises to be of huge interest due to the participation of prestigious artists from all of Italy.

PALAU - THE FLAMES SURROUND THE ENTIRE TOWN
There was fear for the worst for three hours amongst the stately homes at "Stazzo Pulcheddu". Crazy with fear, many tourists hurriedly abandoned the village in their cars.

CARBONIA-CORONEL - TWO CITIES EVOLVED FROM THE MINES GAIN SISTER-CITY STATUS
After nine months, the battle of the 486 unemployed interim workers ["lavoratori socialmente utili"] from the "Parco Geominerario" [Geo-mining Park] continues and so does the occupation of the Villamarina Tunnel and the Pozzo Sella.  The activities continue with a schedule of cultural events, which includes amongst other, the participation of Chilean band, "Inti-Illimani" and the inauguration of a Sister-City program between Carbonia and the Chilean city of Coronel where the local miners have been occupying a coal mine for the last three months.

TOURISTS REPORTED TO THE POLICE - NATURAL ARCH BECOMES SOUVENIR
BAUNEI - Now it's becoming a bad habit, a lousy way of ending a vacation with a souvenir from Sardinia.  Here we go again: yet another tourist - actually, this time there were five, including a woman and two children - here to vandalise the Island's natural assets.  Since the foray against the famous Cala Girgolu turtle, the plunder of sand at Budelli, the chipped red rocks at Arbatax there have been various other acts of vandalism.  This time the "arch" [natural rock formation], classified as a national monument, on the sea at Cala Goloritze' in the Baunei area, has been carved up.  The men from the Harbour Office have reported the predator-tourists from Como to the Police.  A search of the tourists' rubber dinghy berthed in the Port at Cala Gonone revealed quartzite crystals and other minerals eradicated from the famous arch-shaped rock, which is a symbol, pretty much an icon of Ogliastra tourism.

THE TOWERS OF STINTINO IN DANGER
In the past they even resisted attacks from the Saracens but today, the Towers of Stintino, amongst which the Pelosa Tower, are at risk of collapsing under attacks from a new type of pirate.  It is both Italians and foreigners who take it in turn to ransack the ancient guard posts as if it was a beach holiday pastime.  They climb up the towers to reach the top and forage in the inside halls, searching for those fragments of history, the destruction of which they are inadvertently (one would hope) contributing.  The effects of this game are devastating.  The masses of stone are not bearing up to the constant battering and the walls are developing cracks ever-increasing in size.  The town's Mayor is helpless.  In fact, the monument, which is symbolic of the small area, stands on State property.  So at this point, another game begins.  Whose responsibility is to rectify the problem?

CAGLIARI - ARMED HOLD-UP WITH FIVE HOSTAGES
Two masked armed-bandits broke into the vault of the via Torino branch of the Banco di Sardegna and completely "cleaned out" the safe after having immobilised the Manageress, a clerk and three customers.  They stole forty million Lire.

S'ISTRUMPA - MEMORIES AND PASSION
The 13th National Championship of "S'Istrumpa", the ancient art of wrestling amongst shepherds, was held yesterday at Ollolai.  It was officially declared a sport some years ago.

DRY SPELL NOW KILLING OFF MOUFLONS
NUORO - The prolonged dry spell that has hit the central areas of Sardinia and Ogliastra in particular, is endangering the lives of the mouflons.  According to reports from the Gennargentu Branch of the World Wildlife Fund, about ten animals have been found dead to date but these numbers are destined to grow.  The environmental association has appealed for help from the Army and Fire Fighters, asking them to utilise their helicopters for the carriage of water to the mouflons.

DOLPHINS MUTILATED BY FISHERMEN GO TO DIE ON THE BEACHES
Four dolphins in four days beached themselves to die after having been severely mutilated along the South-East coast of the "Golfo degli Angeli", in the Cagliari area.  Upon examination, the technicians and experts from the "Centro Studi Cetacei" [Centre for Cetacean Studies] found that all the animals (of the "Stenella" [striped dolphin] species) had the same mutilations to their fins and abdomen.  It is believed that the mammals could have fallen into fishermen's nets and that the fishermen deliberately caused the mutilations in order to free themselves of the cetaceans.  The tactic is often used to distance these groups of dolphins away from the nets as they could jeopardise a fishing expedition.

RIOT ON THE BEACH AGAINST A TOURIST
SANT'ANTIOCO: Evolution of the species - first the butcher of the rock turtle and now a poor turtle gets kidnapped on arrival, injured and exhausted at the beach at Turri.  The perpetrator was slinking away nonchalantly with the animal wrapped in a towel but he was stopped by scandalised sunbathers.
The young specimen of a "caretta caretta" [Loggerhead Sea Turtle] had a mutilated fin with obvious traces of scarring from an old injury but was then able to go back into the sea.

9th September

"BRIGATA SASSARI" READY FOR THE HARVEST
"Camp Italy" is just about fully occupied.  There are now 550 young men from the Brigata Sassari mustered at the Italian base in the former military airport at Petrovec, which is about 20 kilometres from the capital, Skopje.  150 Turkish soldiers have joined them.  Together and under the Italian contingent's command, they will participate in "Operation Essential Harvest", the collection of arms from the Albanian guerrillas that NATO is carrying out in Macedonia.

AIR TRANSPORT - MORE TIME WASTED BEFORE FINAL IMPLEMENTATION OF DISCOUNTED FLIGHTS
It seems we will have to wait another six weeks before the Lazio "TAR" [Regional Administrative Tribunal] releases its decision.  The meeting, which will involve comparisons between the airlines interested in the operation of flights to Sardinia, has been set for 11 October.  The administrative judges have summoned Alitalia, Meridiana, Volare and Air One, the airline excluded from the tender, to participate in the debate.  The Tribunal has also decided to re-examine the request for the allocation of the Alghero-Milan route, which is currently allocated to Volare but for which no offer had been made by any of the airlines.

CAR SINKS INTO VILLASMUS HARBOUR
25-year-old Andrea Tola from Monserrato lost control of his car in the Port area at Villasmus.  The car flew into the harbour and the driver drowned.  According to an initial reconstruction made by the Carabinieri, the young man had made an error of judgement whilst driving.  His four friends, who were passengers in the car, managed to escape through the car doors.  Andrea Tola, however, plunged into the harbour, trapped inside the driver's compartment.

TRAGEDY IN SORSO - "I KILLED MY SON"
A violent argument between father and son degenerated into a tragedy at Sorso. The dead man, Mauro Sias, 29, was a labourer currently working in Treviso.  His father, 51-year-old Peppino Sias confessed to having stabbed his son and then having abandoned the body on a footpath. However, the investigators suspect that it was the deceased's brother, Marco, who delivered the one and only fatal blow, straight to the heart.  The two brothers had occasion to quarrel frequently.

MALE, SARDINIAN AND CENTENARIAN
Even in Sardinia there are those who are searching for the longevity gene.  This is not surprising because this is the "island of centenarians", the area in the world that has the greatest number of people who are over one hundred years of age.  Of particular interest is the fact that the men are not disadvantaged when it comes to this fight against time.  Whilst the general average is six women against one man, in Sardinia there are certain areas where true equal opportunity prevails.

'BLUE TONGUE" - LIT.10 BILLION ALLOCATED FOR VACCINATIONS
With the allocation of funds, the go-ahead has been given for vaccinations.  The decision was made yesterday by the Regional Council, which re-commenced its activities after the summer break.  Regional Health Inspector, Giorgio Oppi, announced that today he would call a meeting of all Sardinian ASL [Azienda Sanitaria Locale = local medical care unit] management to discuss the allocation of the Lit.10b for the breeders.

JUDGE DECLARES FORESTS AT MONTE ARCOSU "NO GO ZONE" FOR FIRE-BUG
An extraordinary decision was handed down against the arsonist who allegedly started a fire within the WWF Natural Oasis at Monte Arcosu on 28 July this year.  The GIP [Judge for Preliminary Investigations] handed down an injunction at a cautionary level.  Francesco Garau, 37, from Capoterra, "is prohibited from living in the Gutturu Mannu-Monte Arcosu mountain region".  The injunction handed down by the Cagliari GIP is only the second one of its kind in Italy.  The first, regarding the huge fire at Monte Ortobene, dates back to 1998.

FERRY TRIP CANCELLED - 535 TOURISTS ON BREAD AND WATER ON A "FREIGHTER"
GOLFO ARANCI.  It was supposed to be a return home with the wind in their sails.  However, an odyssey began for 535 tourists on 31 August at the port of Golfo Aranci.  Bad weather stopped the fast ship "Sardinia Express" from departing for Civitavecchia and it was only the next morning that the holidaymakers were able to embark.on the "Logudoro", however, a cargo ship with very little food and water.  The CODACONS [Coordinamento delle Associazioni per la Difesa dell'Ambiente e dei Diritti degli Utenti e dei Consumatori = Italian Consumer Association] will be available to all those who will want to be reimbursed for damaged.

SPORT:  CHAMPIONSHIPS BEGIN AGAIN
Come September and soccer championships begin again in categories B and C1 in which the Cagliari and Torres teams will participate respectively.  Cagliari was eliminated from the Coppa Italia championship whilst the Torres team progresses into the next heat.  In the championship, Cagliari begins with an insignificant home game draw and Torres with a defeat.

ALGHERO HAS BEEN A CITY FOR 500 YEARS
Alghero celebrates 500 years of "city" status.  It was 28 August 1501 during an official ceremony that King Ferdinand the Catholic, Isabella's husband, referred to Alghero explicitly and a number of times as a "ciutat" [city], rather than "vila" [town] or "Iloch" [place], thereby effectively dismissing these classifications, which were previously in use.

THE SAND PREDATORS HAVE LANDED
Yachtsmen landing from a rubber dinghy filled up some bags and left again in a flash.  These last few days of summer are becoming a boom time for vandals who are not afraid of either the strict control measures or the heavy fines.  Kilos of the precious quartz grains are disappearing from Is Aruttas every day.

TAVOLARA - FAMILY OF DOLPHINS GROWS:  10-DAY-OLD PUPPY SIGHTED
Another happy event has been recorded amongst the dolphins that inhabit the Sardinian coastline.  A puppy that joined the family about ten days ago was sighted near Tavolara.  Events of this nature reinforce the fact that the ideal conditions of the sea around Sardinia favour these cetaceans and their reproduction.

19th September

CONDOLENCES:  The editorial staff and members of Isola Sarda would like to take this opportunity to extend our sincerest condolences to all those who have lost a member of their family or friend/s in the terrible tragedy in New York.  Please rest assured that our thoughts and prayers are with you in this very sad time for all of us.


*** PRESS REVIEW ***

MOROCCAN NATIONAL MURDERED ON THE BEACH
SANTA TERESA DI GALLURA - One dead and two injured as a result of a brawl, which degenerated into the use of knives.  The incident occurred during the night amongst a group of non-European Union nationals and was evidently due to the non-payment of a debt.

A BUOY IN THE "LAGO DEL COGHINAS" MONITORS POLLUTION
OSCHIRI - Lake Coghinas, the most important water resource in the Sassari province, will no longer be an unknown entity when it comes to the supply of water to Sassari, the Anglona area, Porto Torres, Alghero and all the other built up areas it services.  In fact, the Sassari provincial administration is now installing an oceanographic buoy in the lake.  The equipment will check water quality every three hours by means of probe that travels to various depths.  It will analyse the samples of water collected and the results will then be transmitted to the provincial data collection centre at Alghero.

COLLISION IN THE AIR AVOIDED BY JUST 5 KILOMETRES
It was just 2.5 miles, less than five kilometres.  The distance seems substantial but for two aircraft it is just a few seconds of flight time.  This was the small amount of air space over Civitavecchia separating the Meridiana aircraft travelling from Olbia to Fiumicino and the English airline, British Midland, aircraft that didn't follow instructions from the Air Traffic Control Tower last week.  "It was just short of a collision", said some of the 164 passengers who were on board the aircraft that belongs to the Aga Khan's airline.  Meridiana's response from Olbia was to deny that there was ever any danger and ENAV [Italian Agency for Civil Air Traffic Control] confirms this claim.  However, a parliamentary inquiry has been called for, in order to investigate matter further.

24th September

STATE RAILWAYS - LIT.842 BILLION IN FUNDING FOR UP-GRADE
The Regional seven-year plan (2001-2007), an infrastructure development program aimed at the modernisation of the Sardinian railway system includes projects to the value of Lit.842.8 billion.  These projects will be carried out on the Main Line of the Sardinian railway system, its technology, on functional improvements to some stations (Oristano, Macomer, Olbia, Villamassargia and Siliqua) and the up-grade of the metropolitan Cagliari-Decimomannu service.  Off the Main Line, the secondary line between Campeda and Bonovra (with a double track, one of which is already fitted out) has been active since July.  At the same time, work is being carried out on the infrastructure and technology development of the network, whilst focusing on the Sassari-Porto Torres sector and the Chilivani secondary line in particular.  Another important project is the doubling up of the Decimomannu-San Gavino track, the completion of which is planned for the year 2007.  Finally, work is being done on plan to modernise and consequently speed up the Cagliari-Oristano service.

VOCATIONAL TRAINING - LIT.20 BILLION EARMARKED FOR NEW PROJECTS
More than Lit.200 billion of EEC funds will be utilised within the year for vocational training programs.  These are funds from the Regional Operational Plan and are destined above all to the professional development of Sardinia's workers and to fight unemployment.

THE SARDINIAN DEER PROLIFERATES IN CORSICA
Sardinian deer are "repopulating" Corsica.  It is actually the Corsican Red Deer and Its scientific name is Cervus Elaphus Corsicanus.  Previously extinct on Sardinia's twin island, they are now frolicking again in the Corsican Regional Nature Park.  The specimens were originally imported from Sardinia.  The deer repopulation project has been successful and the colony is currently made up of more than 200 deer.  Smaller than the European species, it is a deer that can only be found on the two Islands.  Its males weigh 120-130 Kgs., compared to the average weight of 220-280 Kgs. typical of the European species and it is only 95-1,000 cm. tall (height at withers), compared to its cousins on the Continent that measure from 120-130 cm. (fino al garrese).  In the late "Sixties" it had been included in the World-Wide Endangered Species List of animals in danger of extinction.  Sought after for the precious horns in the male and hunted down because of scarcity of food during World War II and as a sport afterwards, it had disappeared from Corsica.  In Sardinia it survived and now the biggest colonies are in the Cagliari area.  The WWF's objective in Sardinia now is to bring back the deer to the Gennargentu area.

SHORT-LIVED KIDNAPPING - 5 ARRESTED IN THE "VALLE DELLA LUNA"
The Court in Tempio sentenced five young male "jugglers" (by profession) to a year in jail.  They were accused of having illegally confined and beaten a young girl last Sunday.  When they were arrested, the young men justified their actions by stating that it was "because she had stolen money from us".  Yesterday, justice was served rapidly for the crime, which occurred in the "Valle della Luna" [Valley of the Moon], near the Capo Testa promontory in the Santa Teresa area.
All five had been arrested on Sunday night and locked up in the "La Rotonda" prison at Tempio for having beaten up and illegally detained a 22-year-old woman from Porto Torres.  The woman was subsequently freed by the Carabinieri from Santa Teresa and taken to the hospital at Tempio in a state of confusion.  It is presumed that the woman had been drugged and should be released from hospital within two weeks.

7,000 AERIAL PHOTOS FOR THE PREVENTION OF UNAUTHORISED BUILDING ACTIVITIES
When it comes to attempts at carrying out illegal activities and indiscriminate construction of unauthorised buildings, the Sardinian coastline is under control.  A monitoring and action program set up by the WWF in conjunction with the Guardia di Finanza [Ministry of Finance Police] enables them to keep watch around the clock.  Now, even the public will be able to participate through a dedicated Internet site that will report the state of conservation of the 1,800 Kms. of Sardinian coastline by means of a detailed map.
It has taken three years and 7,000 aerial photographs to complete the project.

INJURED SHARK IN THE SEA AT POETTO (CA)
CAGLIARI - A slender cobalt blue shark nearly 1,600cm long, was sighted and then caught.  The specimen which belongs to the "Carcharhinidae" family and its scientific name is "Prionaca Glauca", is commonly known as the "blue shark'.
A group of bathers sighted what they first thought was a dolphin.  The behaviour of the animal, however, was very different to that of the harmless mammal and it was only later discovered that the shark was injured and trying to beach itself.  It would plunge into the water, only to come back up again very quickly to the surface.  It repeatedly swam in a near-circular fashion, unable to get closer to the shore and at the same time, unable to get away.  The large fish was caught by a small craft.

PORTO TORRES - "IT'S A THIRD-WORLD PASSENGER TERMINAL"
Some Regional Councillors have lodged a complaint about the poor state of the Port facilities in Porto Torres.  Tirrenia and Grimaldi passenger ships regularly utilise these facilities when berthing these ships in the port.  The complaint has been lodged in the form of an inquiry presented to the President of the Regional Council and Councillors responsible for Tourism and Transport.  The inquiry has been lodged in the hope that an appropriate welcoming facility for arriving passengers complete with toilets and an information booth will be built as soon as possible.

SPORT.
Cagliari fared very badly and the Torres team's performance was mediocre.  Both teams were engaged in home games.  The Bari team (1-2) beat Cagliari and the Torres team drew with Catania (1-1).

OCTOBER 2001

15th October

HUNTER MURDERED DURING HOLD-UP
VILLAGRANDE STRISAILI - Francesco Giamattei, a 62-year-old hunter from Benevento, was murdered recently in the countryside between Villagrande and Talana by two bandits who wanted to steal his rifle.  The man, wounded in the thigh, bled to death.
AN "AFFAIR OF THE HEART" RESOLVED WITH TWENTY KNIFE WOUNDS
ITTIRI - They had gone out together to resolve an argument that had suddenly erupted between them regarding a beautiful girl.  However, jealousy was already gnawing away at Stefano Diana's brain.  The 25-year-old labourer from Pozzomaggiore confronted Mario Simula (a plumber from Ittiri), already aware of what the outcome of their encounter would be.  He had taken a large kitchen knife with him and when Mario Simula became distracted, Diana took advantage of the situation.  He butchered Simula to death. The Carabinieri went to pick Diana up at his house at 8 o'clock the next morning.  He was still asleep but the proof of the ferocious crime committed a few hours earlier was under his bed.
NEW TRIAL IN THE SILVIA MELIS KIDNAPPING CASE BEGINS
PALERMO - A new trial regarding the Silvia Melis kidnapping case has commenced in the Palermo courthouse.  The woman was abducted in Tortolì on February 19, 1997 and released in the Orgosolo countryside after nine months in captivity.  This new trial will deal with certain episodes that occurred during the frantic process of liberation of the Employment Consultant from Tortolì.  On trial are former editor-entrepreneur, Nicola Grauso, the former Editor of the daily newspaper "L'Unione Sarda", Antonangelo Liori and lawyer, Luigi Garau.  They are accused of extortion and aggravated attempted extortion of a ransom from engineer, Tito Melis and the slander of Judges, Carlo Piana and Mauro Mura from the Cagliari district Public Prosecutor's Office.
TWO ANCIENT ROMAN TOMBS DISCOVERED IN CAGLIARI
Much to everyone's astonishment, two Ancient Roman sarcophagi of rare beauty have been found.  One of the two tombs is still perfectly sealed.  The discovery was made during the excavation of the courtyard of what used to be the Scala di Ferro Hotel and is now destined to become the new premises of the Prefecture.
«THESE ARE THE REMAINS OF NUR, THE ANCESTOR OF THE SARDINIANS»
The suggested hypothesis is certainly fascinating.  In the Sardinia of the Middle-Late Pleistocene Era, approximately 250-300 thousand years ago, there lived a contemporary of Homo Erectus, who right at that time was evolving towards Neanderthal Man on the European Continent.
It all boils down to two bones:  a sturdy tibia from a cervid, which has been extinct for thousands of years and a small bone a few centimetres long.  The former has some parallel incisions at its upper region that, according to Professors Sergio Ginesu and Jean Marie Cordy, can only be attributed to human intervention.  These same researchers claim that the latter bone is the complete phalanx of the thumb of a human being at least two thousand or maybe even three thousand years old.
 
SARDINIAN OIL FOR SAINT FRANCIS
The most important Regional authorities, the Archbishops and Bishops, 80 Mayors and more than three thousand faithful were in Assisi on October 3 and 4.  They were there to offer the oil for the votive lamp, which burns perennially on the tomb of the Patron Saint of Italy as a sign of appreciation and devotion.  As part of a system of rotation, which involves all the Regions of Italy, this year it was Sardinia's turn to participate in this ceremony, which is considered to be much more than just symbolic.
The Provincial leaders of the Island also sent their messages of support.  Sardinia has been a "Franciscan" stronghold since 1230 when the first followers of "Il Poverello" [the poor man] of Assisi arrived in Cagliari to set up a number of monasteries that were subsequently built all over Sardinia.  The Order's female presence dates back to the early Thirteenth Century when the Poor Clares founded convents in Cagliari, Sassari, Oristano, Alghero, Tempio and Ozieri.  At the same time, the first groups of lay Franciscans [Brothers and Sisters of Penance] who are now known as the Third Order.
Today, there are no less than 150 of these Franciscan brotherhoods and seven female institutes of apostolic life on the Island.
 
A SAFE HAVEN FOR WHALES AND DOLPHINS FROM FRANCE TO CAPO FALCONE
Mediterranean whales finally have a home, a safe one.  The Parliament has voted for the ratification of an international agreement that declares the nearly 90 thousand square kilometres between the Ligurian Sea and the upper Tirrhenian Sea as the first marine park sanctuary for the protection of cetaceans.
The project originated from an agreement between Italy, France and the Principality of Monaco for the protection of large marine mammals.  It is located within the limits of a line extending from the western tip of the Giens peninsula in France towards the northern coast of Sardinia at Capo Falcone and Capo Ferro and reaching the Western coast of Italy at Fosso Chiarone in Tuscany.  In order to protect whales, sperm whales and dolphins effectively, all competitions involving fast motor-boats and fishing with the "spadare" [driftnet fishing] will be banned in Italian waters.
 
MAL DI VENTRE ISLAND - NO MAN'S LAND - STOLEN, ANCIENT ROMAN COLUMN
CABRAS - Mal di Ventre Island has been raided by vandals yet again.  During a guided visit to the Island, visitors were able to ascertain the considerable damage sustained by the archaeological heritage that exists on this strip of land emerging from the sea.
This time, the hooligans of the moment chose to attack the granite perimeter wall that surrounds the central tower of the Nuraghic village, built on the mid-Eastern side of the Island, near the «Cala dei Pastori» [Shepherds' Cove].  Even the last section of a column belonging to a huge Ancient Roman «domus», which someone had already tried to remove in the past, was stolen and presumably taken away to someone's garden.
Furthermore, the devastation didn't even spare the rocks on the Island.  One of the rock formations known as «I Fidanzatini» [The Young Betrotheds] was literally decapitated.
 
FACSIMILE OF THE MOUFFLON - SOON IT WILL BE SET FREE ON THE ISLAND
The news comes from London, from the press room of "Nature Biotechnology", the most prestigious biotechnology publication in the world.  "A group of European scientists have succeeded in cloning the first descendant of a mouflon."  The leader of the team, which conducted the research project in laboratories that are still to be identified, is a Sardinian researcher.  The mouflon is also Sardinian since it originates from two specimens that were found dead in an internal area of the Island.
 
A "COSTA SMERALDA" ACCORDING TO THE SCRIPT - ANDREUCCI TRIUMPHS
PORTO CERVO - Paolo Andreucci has won the 20th Costa Smeralda Rally and now sets his sights on the Italian Championship.  His most dangerous rivals were betrayed by the dirt roads in the Gallura area and have had to set aside their dreams of participating on a national level.
 
SPORT
Cagliari and Torres continue to play a disappointing championship, especially when you consider the expectations of a promotion for the two Sardinian teams.  Even if their respective championships are still in the early stages, it seems that the objectives for both the teams are reduced to being able to remain in each of the existing categories.  In their most recent championship games, Cagliari tied (0-0) in Naples and Torres tied (1-1) also away from home in Ascoli. 

21 October

FLORIS RESIGNS BUT PILI AS HIS SUCCESSOR STILL UNCERTAIN
CAGLIARI - The President of the Regional Government, Mario Floris, has resigned, creating a crisis situation for which there doesn't seem to be a solution.  There are so many unpredictable escape routes and at the same time numerous likely scenarios.  Mauro Pili, the leader of "Forza Italia" in the opposition party immediately took action in order to create some order in the situation.  However, the Centre-Right nurtures some grave doubts and other possibilities are not being discounted.  One of these possibilities could be not to accept Floris' resignation and to make an attempt to increase the majority in Parliament.

GOODBYE TO YOUNG WOMAN WHO DIED IN ACCIDENT AT LINATE AIRPORT
A large crowd of Nuoro residents gave a farewell to Antonella Sanna.  The young Engineering Graduate in Business Management died in the tragic accident that occurred at the Airport in Linate recently.  She was one of the passengers on board the Scandinavian Airlines plane about to depart for Copenhagen.  From there, she had planned to travel on by train to Oslo where she was employed as an Area Manager by a Swedish multinational.

QUESTION TIME IN PARLIAMENT: WHY DOESN'T THE GOVERNMENT GIVE THE GO-AHEAD TO "CONTINUITA' TERRITORIALE"?
 ROME - Does the Minister for Infrastructure intend to enact the law that will bring about "Continuita' Territoriale" [extension of discounted flights to/from Sardinia] on the Olbia-Rome and Olbia-Milan routes, which are not subject to an appeal lodged with the TAR [Regional Administrative Tribunal]?  Or is he intending to wait for the Tribunal's decision on the Air One appeal regarding the other three routes?  Members of the Chamber of Deputies Carboni, Duca and Tidei posed this question to the Minister, Pietro Lunardi, in Parliament.  They pointed out that the more than Lit.150 billion allocated with the ratification of the act (No. 144 of 1999) are still available.  After a very lengthy and complex procedure, six routes (Alghero, Cagliari and Olbia to Milan and Rome) were put through the tender process.  The Committee that examined the offers allocated five of these routes.  However, Air One lodged an appeal regarding three of the routes (Cagliari-Milan, Cagliari-Rome and Alghero-Rome).  The three members of the Chamber of Deputies also pointed out that "Act No. 144/99 specifies that it is up to the Minister to decide the date when these new arrangements will be put into effect", and that, "Sardinia has been waiting for this law for over 50 years".

PERSISTENT HEAT, NOT ONLY ON THE ISLAND.  RECORD SUMMER TEMPERATURES IN SIBERIA
ROME - Isn't October the month in which the first cold snaps announce the coming of Winter?  It could be.  However, until now it has appeared to be a continuation of Summer, both in Sardinia and the rest of Italy, with temperatures around 30°C.  According to Vincenzo Ferrara, a climatologist with ENEA [National Agency for Energy and the Environment], this phenomenon originates from a meteorological anomaly, which lies in any case within the more generalised tendency to global warming of the planet.
The "meteorological anomaly" is a persistent low-pressure trough over the North Atlantic, which is "pumping" hot air over the Mediterranean.  In the area where this mass of hot air clashes with the colder air present in Central Europe, there is rain and temperatures more in line with seasonal averages.  It's an unusual heat for the month of October, with temperatures 7-9°C above average for this time of the year.  A maximum temperature of 33.9°C was experienced in Benetutti in the Sassari province last Saturday.  The SAR [Synthetic Aperture Radar] stations registered unusually high temperatures more common during late Summer in a number of areas on the Island on Sunday as well.

THE "GEO-MINING PARK" DREAM BECOMES REALITY
After a year of general protests and the occupation of the sites at Monteponi (Pozzo Sella), Montevecchio and Villasalto, the Ministers for the Protection of the Environment (Mattioli), Productive Activities (Antonio Marzano) and Education and Research (Letizia Moratti) all signed the decree, which would give the go-ahead to the setting up of the Geo-Mining Park.  The financing for the project had already been approved by the Parliament in its Budget 2000.  Those who had fought long and hard for the Park's establishment met the news that the heads of the three Government Departments responsible for the project had finally signed the decree with satisfaction.
Now that the Park has been given the definite go-ahead, other arrangements will have to be made, including the election of a Provisional Committee that will manage the Park.

VALLEDORIA RE-LAUNCHES ITS ARTICHOKE
Maybe not everyone knows that the artichoke from Valledoria, the choice "Spinoso Sardo" variety is one of the most valued and sought-after.  And many of the consumers in the Northern part of Italy, where this product is mostly sold, don't know that such a tasty and perfumed artichoke comes from the Bassa Valle del Coghinas in the Sassari province.  Its vast plantations have become one of the most typical sights of this valley and Valledoria has always been synonymous with the artichoke.  The thriving plain, which was saved from the floods by the land reclamation works carried out between the Twenties and Thirties, currently produces nearly 30 million artichoke heads, with a turnover of Lit.20 billion.

CORSICA-SARDINIA.  STRATEGIC ALLIANCE AIMED AT GAINING MORE INFLUENCE IN EUROPE
SASSARI - The catch phrase is "insular alliance".  It's a strategy with which Sardinia and Corsica can gain more influence in the European Union and within the international bodies where the economic fate of the two islands is decided.  They are twin islands that share a number of problems, in particular their isolation and also their physical distance from the rest of Europe.  These were the themes for discussion that featured in the second conference between Sardinia, Corsica and Europe, which was held at Villa Mimosa this week.

GAVOI CELEBRATES THE LIT.10 BILLION WIN
Lady Luck has finally discovered the heart of Sardinia and brought good fortune to the wretched Barbagia area with a Superenalotto win of no less than Lit.10.48 billion plus .some loose change, a winning sum never achieved in the entire Nuoro province before yesterday.  The stroke of luck this time befell the punters who play their numbers at the Superenalotto kiosk in the "G 3" Bar in via Roma, right in the centre of the town of Gavoi.  The small town (population 3,000) is situated on Highway 128.  It is famous as the capital of the "Fiore Sardo" Pecorino cheese and for the incredibly beautiful Lake Gusana, which is situated in its territory.

ENORMOUS BRONZE CRUCIFIX ON THE TUTTAVISTA BY HELICOPTER
GALTELLÌ.  Yesterday, after nearly ten months of being temporarily located in the local sports stadium, the Tuttavista Crucifix, a bronze work of art by the Spanish academic, Pedro Angel Terron Manrique, is finally on top of the mountain overlooking the Baronia. To carry it up there, it took the Army's biggest helicopter in service.

ASSISI INVADED BY THOUSANDS OF SARDINIANS
For two days, Sardinian was spoken in Assisi and Santa Maria degli Arcangeli.  Sardinia, from which all its Bishops came, responded to the national celebration with the usual enthusiasm and great faith towards the Saint of Assisi.  The participation was made up of such large numbers that it even surprised the Umbrian friars who are quite used to supervising the annual celebrations, which feature a different region each year.

THE SARDINIANS ARE IGNORING VIAGRA FOR NOW
The Sardinians are not very familiar with Viagra.  For whatever the reason, however, this is the statistical data that emerges from a research project carried out by Pfizer (the pharmaceutical company that manufactures the product).  It states that the male population of the Island is the least likely to resort to "chemical palliatives" in order to alleviate an erectile dysfunction.  On top of the list for consumption are the regions of the central North, beginning with Tuscany and Latium.  The Southern regions are at the bottom of the list, with Sardinia 15th, Sicily 14th and Basilicata, which in 20th place, seems to ignore that the product actually exists or perhaps doesn't need it at all.

FISHING, SARDINIANS PREFER GILT-HEAD BREAMS
Sardinians are on top of the list in Italy for the consumption of Gilt-head Breams.  On average, an Island family will buy nearly 2.5 kilos a year, compared to the 900gr. Purchased in the regions in the North of Italy.  Speaking in general terms and on a national level, Sardinians are amongst the most important connoisseurs of fresh fish.  This statistical data stems from the research project «Piscis - Qualitative and Quantitative Research on Sardinian Fish Products», carried out by the Federcoopesca [National Federation of Fishing Co-ops]. Getting back to the results of the research, one can deduce that the average monthly expenditure on fish per family is Lit.27, 000, a larger amount than the regions in the North and equivalent to those in the Mezzogiorno (southern Italy).
Above all, Sardinians consume farmed fish (Bream and Bass in particular) but the consumption of mussels and molluscs like polyps, squid and cuttlefish is also high.
The research also highlighted that families are least likely to consume the rarer fish varieties like mullet and white bream, whilst the consumption of fish soup products is very, very low.
Fish products are only purchased occasionally, above all in the inland and mountain Comunes.  For example, the findings showed that the Nuoro and Gallura areas have the lowest consumption of fish products caught off the Sardinian coast.  These are two areas of Sardinia where animal farming is widespread and therefore the consumption of meat is high.

MAYBE THE MEGA-DAM PROJECT WILL GO AHEAD
Maybe the large dam at Monte Nieddu-Is Canargius, destined to resolve water deficit problems for Sarroch, Pula, Villa San Pietro, Domusdemaria, Capoterra and part of the Sulcis, will not remain a dream.  Even though the hope of having the project finalised by the end of 2001 has vanished, the Regional Government has come to an agreement with the Ministry of Infrastructure to go ahead anyway.  Now they will have to take action on these undertakings, something that is never easy.

SPORT
It appears to be a year of suffering for Island soccer fans.  Cagliari and Torres continue to lose badly and find themselves right at the bottom of their respective championship categories (B e C1), with the real threat of having to be relegated to the lower divisions.

29 th October

DONE!  "CONTINUITA' TERRITORIALE" BECOMES LAW
It is fait accompli.  Sardinians will now be able to enjoy air-travel at super-discounted rates.  It took years of hard work, including political and technical meetings and planning conferences but the final signature was
secured this week.  The Minister for Infrastructures and Transport, Pietro Lunardi announced that he had signed the relevant documentation and the Law had finally been passed.  October 28 is the prescribed deadline for the launch of the discounted fares but it is a deadline that will be difficult to meet.  The technical aspects of the launch are the Airlines' responsibility and even if the October 28 deadline may not be met, since all the relevant details have not been outlined, including the schedules, it will not be delayed too much. The Law, signed by Lunardi is made up of three files, which state in conclusion that there is a requirement to provide a public transport service on the Cagliari-Rome, Cagliari-Milan, Olbia-Rome, Olbia-Milan and Alghero-Rome routes.  Unfortunately the Alghero-Milan sector has been excluded from these provisions.  The Ministerial document outlines the rules governing the allocation of these routes.  Alitalia will be subsidised by Lit.27 billion for the Cagliari-Rome route; Volare Airlines will be allocated Lit.11.970 billion for the Cagliari-Rome sector; Meridiana will receive Lit.415,000,000 for the Olbia-Rome sector and Lit.12.3 billion for the Olbia-Milan sector and lastly, Alitalia will be subsidised with Lit.
11.700 billion for the Alghero-Rome sector.

NEW ERUPTION OF VIOLENCE IN THE BARBAGIA AREA
NUORO - The latest criminal activities in Barbagia and Ogliastra - four homicides in two weeks - could make one think that it may be the beginning of a new wave of violence.  But in reality these episodes are a sign that in these areas, not much has changed compared to the recent past.  Even though the truce was relatively short, it could in fact have been assumed there was one, since there was a considerable decrease in the crime rate. This, above all, because it was a reality in the areas in which, until a few years ago, the average crime rate was constantly high.  One of the towns that had benefited from this new and positive state of affairs was in fact Orune, which had registered a substantial decrease in the number of
homicides.  The murder of Damiano Pirrolu re-opens an old chapter, also because it appears that it wasn't at all unexpected.  The man was killed according to a ritual repeated a thousand times in the past.  The novelty,
however, seems to be Oliena, which for years had never appeared in newspaper headlines.

<<YES TO NATURE PARKS BUT WITH THE CONSENT OF THE PEOPLE>>
For the Minister, Altero Matteoli, who was in Sardinia last week, there are no doubts.  "The parks will go ahead with the support and consent of the people.  If there is disapproval on their part, there is no point in
planning on paper."  "Citizens should be made fully aware of the characteristics of nature parks by their mayors," he pointed out.  "The parks cannot just come out of the blue."  It is an obvious inference to the
Gennargentu park, the implementation of which has been delayed due to the lack of approval from the mayors of the towns concerned. During the press conference, Matteoli advised that a second instalment of
Lit.52 billion (Lit.120 billion in total) have been transferred to the Regional Government for the works involved in the reclamation of the di Molentargius system.  With regard to the proposed transfer of the salt-pans from the Monopolio di Stato [Government Monopoly System] to the Regional Government, the Minister promised he would take it up with his colleague at the Ministry of Finance.

"MERIDIANA" BECOMES LOST IN THE FOG
MILAN - The weekly magazine "Panorama" reports that on Sunday, October 14, the first fog-bound day after the MD87 tragedy, another aircraft became "lost" on the runway at Linate Airport.  According to the article, last Sunday a Meridiana flight bound for Olbia was due to take off at 7.30 p.m. but the control tower couldn't locate it.  The pilots, also disorientated because of the lack of signage, requested the assistance of a "follow me", i.e., the small van fitted with neon lights that guides the planes in their movements on the ground.  In Linate there is only one van and when it was finally available, it took quite a while to locate the aircraft.

THE MANIAC HAS STRUCK AGAIN
TEMPIO - The maniac, who has been terrorising women for the last year, turned up again last week in the main town centre.  The elusive stranger attacked a mother on her way home with an 18-month-old girl in a
baby-stroller.  A tragedy was just barely avoided.  The stroller was blocked at the very last moment whilst careering down a steep descent.  The mother was injured whilst trying to save the little girl.

USE OF INTERNET - SARDINIAN COMPANIES LAST ON THE LIST
The Internet is a little understood reality for businesses in the South of Italy.  At a conference, "What is there beyond the bridge?" held in Crotone, it emerged that only 13% of businesses in the South have access to the Internet, compared to the national average of 30%.  In any event, the statistics from Rome down are highly irregular if examined from Region to Region.  On top of the list for access to the Internet is Puglia with 17%, followed by Sicily with 16%, Abruzzo and Molise with 15% and Campania with 11%.  At the tail end are Calabria with 9% and Sardinia, which witnessed the birth of Tiscali, the Internet phenomenon par excellence, with 7%.

LOCAL SPECIALTY PRODUCTS FROM SARDINIA IN LONDON
"Made in Sardinia" products have set out to conquer London.  Londoners and people from all over the U.K. will be able to appreciate Sardinian products at the second international exhibition organised by the marketing consortium, Partnership International Sardinia (PIS), from October 22, 2001.
There are ceramics, items in cork and wood made by artisans, the filigree of the jewellers, the precious textiles, the shawls and the cork suits made by Island tailors. All this accompanied by red wine tasting, sampling of pecorino cheese and other gastronomical specialties from Sardinia. The exhibition will be held at the Millennium Hotel in Gloucester, which is in the Kensington area.

CINEMA - MADONNA ARRIVES IN SARDINIA
We at Isola Sarda usually avoid telling you about all the stars (or those who presume to be such) who come to Sardinia to spend their vacations.  This time we are dealing with something a little different.  In fact, Madonna (yes, the pop star!) arrived in Sardinia to appear in some scenes of the remake of the film, "Travolti da un Insolito Destino Nell'Azzurro Mare D'agosto" [Released as "Swept Away" in English-speaking countries in 1975. TN]. The director of the remake of the Lina Wertmuller film will be Madonna's husband.  Ms. Wertmuller filmed the original version at Cala Gonone and on a beach in the Baronia area in 1974, however, any involvement on her part in the remake has been excluded. The stars of the original version of the film were Mariangela Melato and Giancarlo Giannini.

NOVEMBER 2001

11th November

ISOLA SARDA NEWSLETTER CELEBRATES ITS FIRST BIRTHDAY
Isola Sarda launched its weekly series of Newsletters on November 5, 2000. Now, a year later, the production of this service is still active and currently reaches over 860 subscribers.  The production of the Newsletter entails a great deal of effort on the part of volunteers within an association that is totally lacking in funding and relies solely on donations made by kind friends who are connected to it via the Internet.  Notwithstanding, we have decided to continue providing this service because we have come to the conclusion that for certain groups of people, it's the ONLY means of maintaining contact with Sardinia.  In fact, the Newsletter is translated into English and offers a selection of news items regarding the most important events of the week.  The Site Editor wishes to extend his personal thanks to the translators who have made this important source of information possible.

GOVERNMENT GIVES GO-AHEAD:  PAPER MILL SOLD TO NEBIOLO
ARBATAX - The much awaited extraordinary meeting of the Comitato di Sorveglianza [Monitoring Committee] responsible for the "Nuova Cartiera" in Arbatax has been held.  The outcome of the meeting was more than a positive one.  At the conclusion of the meeting, the all clear was given for the sale of the factory to the Nebiolo Printech group, which is based in the Piedmont Region.  Nebiolo are impatiently awaiting the handover of the keys to the plant, which is due to occur once the Ministerial procedure is completed.
The re-opening of the factory will provide an important boost to the local economy.  All the 140 factory employees currently up for redeployment will be re-employed by the end of next year.

FIRST CASE OF "MAD COW" IN SARDINIA
The technical experts at the Cagliari "Istituto Zooprofilattico" [Institute for Preventive Medicine in Animals] were not wrong.  The cow, butchered in a private facility in the Nurri area, was affected by Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy (BSE).  Thus, Sardinia has been affected directly by a sickness that everyone, above all the cattle farmers, hoped would remain on the other side of the Tirrhenian Sea.  Although, to tell the truth, a number of factions have always maintained that the likelihood of Sardinia remaining unscathed was remote.

ISLAND ECONOMY THE MOST DINAMIC IN THE SOUTH OF ITALY
ROME - According to analysts at the "Curella" Foundation and the Di.S.Te. [Department of Territorial Studies], the forecast for economic growth in the South of Italy for the current year is 2.1%, compared to 1.5% recorded in the central Northern Regions.  However, the arrival of the negative phase has only been postponed.  It is anticipated that in 2002, the growth rate in the South will only reach 1%.  Sardinia's situation stands out in this scenario in chiaroscuro.  According to statistics provided by the
Foundation, Sardinia's productivity index is the highest amongst the Southern Italian Regions at 60 points compared to the 42 points recorded in the second semester of 2000, which had placed it second-last on the list.

YOUNG MAN DISAPPEARS - IT WAS AN ACCIDENT
MURAVERA - The mystery of the disappearance of Michele De Michelis has been solved but with a tragic ending.  The 27-year-old university student from Muravera had not been heard from for 8 days.  The young man lost his life in a road accident along Highway 125. Evidently, the accident theory had not been taken into great consideration by the investigators who had focussed their inquiries elsewhere.

THE STATE WILL BUY SANTA MARIA
The Italian Minister for the Environment, Altero Matteoli, has made his decision.  The State will exercise its right of pre-emption when it purchases Isola di Santa Maria located in the Maddalena Archipelago in order
to convert it to State Land.  The Tribunal at Tempio will auction the 100-hectare island on December 11, 2001.  The World Wildlife Fund (WWF) maintains that the Government's decision should also extend to the Isola di Mal di Ventre, which is about to be sold to private parties.

SARDINIA WILL HAVE AN "EAR" THAT SPIES ON THE STARS
The Sardinia Radio Telescope project was launched last week.  It features the installation of a highly sophisticated antenna in San Basilio at Pranu Sanguni.  The massive apparatus (64 metres in diameter) will have to satisfy the needs of both the Italian and international astronomy and space travel communities.  It will be made up of more than one thousand "active" metallic panels and distortions (due to wind, temperature and gravity) will be corrected in real time.

SARDINIA AT THE "SAGRA DEL NOVELLO"
There are about 20 Sardinian producers (of 1,200,000 bottles) but only half of them will participate in the "Salone Nazionale del Vino Novello" [National Exhibition of "Novello" Wine] in Vicenza on Monday, November 5, 2001.  The wine will be placed on the market officially the following day.
 Originating in the Beaujolais Region of France in the 1950s, the Novello became popular in Italy in the 1970s and soon became a market phenomenon, its consumption growing rapidly in the last few years. What have also grown are the prestige and the number of bottles of Sardinian Novello that reach the marketplace.  This is also thanks to the use of Cannonau, Carignano, Cagnulari, and Bovale grapes, which are very different to those utilised in other parts of Italy.

100 METRE FALL
DORGALI - Gianluca Borella, 35, from Lomazzo, in the Como province, lost his life in a fall of about 100 metres whilst climbing one of the many rock faces especially fitted out for "free climbers" at Monte Oddeu in the Oddoene Valley.  The young man had been in Sardinia for a few days, intending to fulfil a long-standing wish.  He had dreamed of climbing some of the passages between Cala Gonone and Dorgali to which most of those who dedicate themselves to the (not too easy) discipline of free climbing aspire.

 <<HALLOWEEN, FEAST FOR SATANISTS>>
 The Sardinian Church has joined others in "keeping a decisive distance from the Halloween festivities.  Halloween originated as the Pagan New Year of the Celtics and now it is celebrated with the same significance by spiritualist and satanist groups."  Don Ottavio Utzeri, who is in charge of the Centro di Ascolto Ricerca Informazione Sulle Sette (CARIS) [Centre for Research on Sects], doesn't mince words when he rejects the "feast of the pumpkins".  "Furthermore," he adds, "it must be emphasised that it is a feast of Anglo-Saxon origin and has nothing to do with our tradition."  Rather, "it is just an excuse to
generate sales for businesses, to the very young in particular."
 
CAGLIARI WINS AGAIN
Cagliari won for the first time away from home at Cittadella Padova (2-0). Consequently, it is no longer at the bottom of the Championship ladder in Category B.  Torres too remains near the bottom of the C1 Championship List. It lost 2-1 at Sora.

18th Novembre

"Telefono Antiplagio" [the Anti-Coercion Info Line] has been our welcome guest ever since our site first appeared in 1997.  It is an Association that has the defence of the ordinary citizen against being swindled by charlatans as its goal.  This week, our site features the new "2001 Report on Magic and the Esoteric" http://www.isolasarda.com/antiplagio.htm.
I would like to take this opportunity to invite all our readers to contribute new items of interest, featuring topics that deal with Sardinia's culture, tradition, its towns or its natural beauty.

Giorgio Plazzotta
Webmaster, Isola Sarda

*** P R E S S R E V I E W ***
(Selection of news items appearing in the main Sardinian daily newspapers and other sources)

MERIDIANA ANNOUNCES 150 SACKINGS
OLBIA - One hundred and fifty employees, including pilots, flight attendants and ground staff to be sacked.  One out of every ten Meridiana employees will probably be sent home as a result of the airline's loss of the route between Cagliari and Milan, which the tender process has allocated to Volare.  The announcement was made in a letter to the Ente Nazionale Aviazione Civile (ENAC) [Civil Aviation Authority], which was forwarded yesterday to the Unions involved.  The blow was not unexpected but this goes beyond anything that may have been imagined. Extreme anxiety exists as a result.

"TOO MANY DIFFICULTIES, I NEED MORE TIME"
CAGLIARI - «Political difficulties are involved».  Mauro Pili requested and obtained a 5-day delay (until Tuesday, 13) from the Regional Council to the announcement of the Local Council Committee.  Alleanza Nazionale (AN) is standing firm with its external support but a ray of hope has filtered through from the majority party.  Political manoeuvres involving PPS and Amadu are being carried out in an effort to finally form a local Council Committee.  Offering AN more of the bureaucratic positions within the Government is also being considered.

A NEW STYLE OF HOLD-UP - WITH SCRAPER
SASSARI - The criminals' theory is that it's a lot less risky to be armed with bucket and scraper and take the entire teller away, rather than carry out an armed hold-up . at the teller's desk.  This practice has become nearly fashionable.  Take an excavator and a Bancomat [ATM] and there you have it!  It's a modus operandi that has been well and truly tested.  The risks are reduced to a minimum, there are no "Vigilantes" [security guards] shooting at you and a scraper or an excavator making its way down a main street is not something that would alarm either the ordinary citizen or the Police.  These particulars have obviously all been taken into consideration by these criminals.  Not to mention furthermore that even from a legal standpoint, there are fewer repercussions after attacking a bank with a crane than with a Kalashnikov.  In the first instance, it is classified as theft, no matter how violent it may be perceived it is still theft.  In the second, however, it is armed robbery, a crime that attracts an extra six years in prison.

EDENS OF ROCK - 65 BILLION LIRE ARRIVE
IGLESIAS - The birth of the Sardinian Historical and Environmental has been ratified by the Minister for the Environment, Altero Matteoli who originates from Tuscany.  The Law approving the creation of the Park had already been passed on October 16, 2001.  The ratification confirms that there are Lit. 65 billion (Euro 33,569,000) available from the Government and stipulates the setting up of a Provisional Management Committee under the chairmanship of Regional Councillor for the Environment, Emilio Pani.
The Park will now begin its journey to completion under the guidance of the Provisional Committee sanctioned by Ministerial Decree.  The Committee will have 120 days to prepare the preliminary documents.  The responsibility for the task now transfers over to Sardinia.

PENSIONER RUN OVER AFTER A THEFT
SASSARI - Bruno Marogna, (76) a pensioner from Sassari was knocked over by a car on the «131» [State Highway], near Predda Niedda, whilst running away aimlessly in order to escape capture by the security guards who had seen him stealing from the shelves and had ordered him to stop.
It was a desperate dash.  Then the sudden decision to climb over the guardrail and venture into the unlikely prospect of crossing the «SS 131» at a time, 7.15 p.m. when the traffic is very intense.

USE OF PASTURE LAND AT CAPO TEULADA, AGREEMENT REACHED
TEULADA. "The use of pastures by shepherds from the Sulcis within the firing ground in Teulada will go ahead, satisfying both the shepherds and the soldiers."  This was stated by Felice Floris, President of the "Associazione inteprovinciale pastori sardi" [Interprovincial Association of Sardinian Shepherds] at the conclusion of the meeting held in the Army's firing range with the Commander of the First Cuirassier Regiment.

THE PROTEST OF THE SHEPHERDS ON HORSEBACK IN FRONT OF THE REGIONAL GOVERNMENT BUILDING
CAGLIARI - That's all that was needed.  After the tractors, the trucks and the sheep then came the horses.  About ten shepherds and sheep farmers from the "Cuiles [Sardinian name for sheep pen] Movement" staged a unique type of protest by turning up in via Roma in front of the Regional Council building on horseback last week.  They had decided to lodge their protest with the Council and go on a hunger strike because their flocks had been hit and consequently decimated by catarrhal fever, otherwise known as "Blue Tongue Disease".

TRAMATZA HAS THE FIRST RACING CIRCUIT ON THE ISLAND
ORISTANO - Centrally located and in a position easily accessible from all over the Island, a 1.3 km.-long circuit is available for car, motorbike and go-kart enthusiasts.  The first car race, an inter-Regional Formula Challenge will be held on Sunday, November 25, 2001.
Apart from the racing circuit, the area is progressing with the construction of an indoor pool, a congress centre housing six meeting rooms, two restaurants and a luncheonette, two cafes and two markets catering for tourists.

WORLD MUSIC WILL RECORD IN A RESIDENCE
CANNIGIONE - The road is that of the Isuledda, between Cannigione and Palau, after first having passed through Capo d'Orso.  Hidden there is a "residence" [holiday home], called "Li Capanni", the name of a place in the Galluria area.  The founder of and vocalist in the "Genesis" group and currently the prime representative of "World Music", Peter Gabriel, has bought it.  It is there that he will set up a recording studio.  Gabriel knows Sardinia and he knows the Gallura area.  The "Tenores di Bitti" entered his musical circuit years ago.

SOCCER
Torres lifts both morale and its position on the list with a beautiful home win against Aquila (3-1).  Cagliari flounders with a draw (1-1) at home against Ternana.  Villacidrese's triumphal march continues in Serie D.

25th November

PILI'S TOWN COUNCIL READY TO GO AHEAD
At the third attempt, after the other two in 1999, Mauro Pili has made it.  His Council has obtained the Regional Council's vote of confidence.  The crisis in government, sparked by Mario Floris' resignation due to the defectors, has been resolved regardless of the "Centre-Right's" internal conflicts.

THE ALGERIA-SARDINIA GASDUCT WILL GO AHEAD
The Council of Ministers has approved a Bill made under delegate powers.  The Bill, originally proposed by Antonio Marzano, the Minister for Productive Activities [formerly Ministry for Foreign Trade], will relaunch the new gas pipeline project from Algeria to Italy, via Sardinia.  In fact, during the 2-year period 2003-2004, Article 15 of the legislation has allocated a total of 225 million euro for the development of the international infrastructure necessary for the supply of natural gas.
A further 175 million euro will be invested during the 3-year period 2002-2004.  Article 15 of the legislation states that the objective of the Government is "the development of the gas system the reliability of the supplies and the growth of the energy market".

THE FURY OF THE SEA LASHES OUT ON THE "POETTO"
On Monday, November 12, blustering wind, at times up to 180 km per hour, throughout the night and until the early dawn, causing considerable damage mainly in the coastal areas where very rough seas made it difficult for the ships to navigate in the Tirrhenian Sea.  The Poetto beach was literally lashed by the wind and the sea storm; a force-7 sea that swept over the beach with waves even two metres high and changing its normal appearance dramatically.
Scores of plastic chairs usually stacked on top of each other at the rear of the little kiosks situated along the seafront were later found a number of metres away.  The small coffee bars, a customary meeting place for thousands of people during the Spring-Summer period and on Winter mornings, were totally flooded.  In Genoa, three passenger ships arriving from Sardinia with hundreds of people on board remained blocked by a vicious storm for nearly ten hours in front of the port.  The same thing happed a few days later in Olbia after a violent downpour.  Because of the damages caused by the bad weather, the Regional Government has initiated the procedure to declare a "state of natural disaster".

MERIDIANA LODGES APPEAL AGAINST VOLARE
Meridiana is lodging an appeal with the Tribunale Amministrativo Regionale (TAR) [Regional Administrative Court] against the decision to allocate the Cagliari-Milan route to Volare.  In the meantime, discussions have been held at the Sassari branch of Confindustria [Italian Employers' Federation] with regard to procedures to be implemented in the case of the 150 sackings announced by the airline as a result of its loss of the Cagliari-Milan route.  The loss is of a very serious nature for Meridiana, so much so that no one has pointed the finger at the airline, which on October 30 announced that it will have to "ground" 80 aircrew (pilots and flight attendants) and 70 employees in the other sectors of the business.
The airline does not wish to give the impression that it is against "territorial continuity", i.e., the system whereby Sardinians will be able to fly at discounted fares.  However, the numbers don't lie.  A loss of 70 billion cannot be sustained without doing something about it.  Better to lose the route altogether.  Meridiana believes that their offer was not evaluated effectively during the tender process, since the margin in Volare's favour is considered to be minimal.

PILOT OF THE "DORNIER" SENTENCED TO TWO YEARS AND EIGHT MONTHS
In the course of abbreviated proceedings, Alessandro Del Buono, the pilot in charge of the Dornier aircraft, which fell into the sea in Genoa on February 25, 1999, has been sentenced to two years and eight months in jail.  Three passengers and a female flight attendant died in the accident, which involved a Minerva Airlines aircraft.  Captain Del Bono was accused of causing a culpable disaster, multiple culpable homicide and multiple culpable damages.
The incident involving the Dornier 328, which was arriving in from Cagliari with 27 passengers on board, occurred at 12.36 p.m.  According to the charges, it had been caused by pilot error when he attempted to land too high and fast, thereby crashing into the sea.

TOO MANY POISONS IN PORTOSCUSO
CAGLIARI - A controversial inquiry by the Cagliari Public Prosecutor's Office could drive away the "Ghost of Porto Marghera" from the Portoscuso industrial area and clear the way for judicial proceedings, which could produce unpredictable results such as the names and faces of the guilty parties.  The data on the concentration of heavy metals in grapes and wines is, to say the least, alarming and now there is a law to punish those who create pollution.
An environmental reform plan and work has been carried out on the chimneys of the metal processing plants in order to reduce dust emissions into the air.  Notwithstanding these measures, statistics show that since 1993, the percentages of cadmium and lead present in the wine production cycle have increased to alarming proportions.  The chemical analysis, which has been carried out and forwarded to the Public Prosecutor's Office, refer only to the musts and wines produced in 2000.  There is no data available on tomatoes, vegetables or fruit.

"BRIGATA SASSARI" RETURNS TO ALBANIA
The "Brigata Sassari" is about to set out for Albania again.  On December 3, the «sassarini» will depart for Durres where the leader of the legendary Brigade will take on the command of COMMZ-W (Western communications area).  They will take over from the «Pozzuolo del Friuli» Brigade as part of "Mission-Joint guardian" - another important mission for the «Sassari».  The command centre will be set up in Durres, whilst operational detachments are planned for other cities in the North of Albania.  The COMMZ-W's duties will be to guarantee good road conditions for the humanitarian convoys travelling along the heavily damaged main arterial routes, which lead North towards Kosovo and South towards Macedonia.

SIX MONTHS OF TV ADVERTISING DESIGNED TO BRING BACK THE CONSUMPTION OF MEAT AND ELIMINATE THE PSYCOSIS
Twenty thousand brochures to inform consumers about the characteristics and unadulterated state of Sardinian meat, as well as a six-month advertising campaign on the main local television and radio channels, in order to relaunch the market affected by the hysteria caused by the "Mad Cow" and "Blue Tongue" epidemics.  This is what is envisaged by the campaign initiated by the Regional Council's Department of Agriculture to promote Island produce and will cost 400 million Lire.  The initiative will also assist the agriculture and livestock industry, which employs 70 thousand people and represents 43% of the Island's gross domestic product.  Nearly 18 thousand sheep-farms and more than 8 thousand cattle-farms are involved.  Since the outbreak of the epidemic, the situation gradually became worse until last April when the consumption of beef decreased by 47% compared to last year.  Now the situation has returned to normal.

«AT THIS POINT, "TISCALI" IS A EUROPEAN COMPANY»
MILAN - Tiscali will close 2001 with revenues of 800 million euro below target, whilst forecasting a turnover of more than a billion euro in 2002.  Renato Soru, the founder of the Sardinian company, made this statement whilst presenting the results for the third trimester of 2001.  It is an assessment of a downward trend that nevertheless doesn't dampen the enthusiasm of the Internet company.  It has been very active in Europe in the last two years, buying out a number of providers.
Furthermore, with regard to the last trimester of the current year, the company confirms that it will balance the operating profit before depreciation [EBITDA], whilst it expects to reach a breakeven point at the cash-flow level in 2002.
«We are not only an Italian company but a European organisation," stated Renato Soru.  From the beginning of next year, we will proceed with the integration of technologies across the board but we already have a good level of integration with twenty companies in fifteen countries.
In this regard, Soru also pointed out that the international company acquisition program might not yet have been completed.

QUARTU - THE COUNCIL SAYS «NO» TO "LOGUDORESE"
Quartu has also said no to the proposal for a unified language made by the group of experts engaged by Pasquale Onida, the former Regional Councillor responsible for Cultural Affairs.  Last Tuesday night, the Council unanimously approved the motion proposed by the Opposition in favour of the preservation of the Sardinian language in the Campidanese version.
Quartucciu too seems to be intending to do the same thing.  Therefore, the Regional Council's official proposal to introduce a unified language influenced nearly exclusively by the Logudorese version has encountered its first refusals.

CISCO NETWORKING ACADEMY FORMED
SCANO MONTIFERRO - The Mayor of Scano, Franco Frascaro, has officially inaugurated the "Regional Academy Montiferru" within the Multimedia Centre in Montiferru.  Rather, he has given it the go ahead to the Cisco Networking Academy, which consists of a new vocational training program, designed to develop Network professionals who specialise in the construction and management of World Area Networks (WAN) and Local Area Networks (LAN).

SURVEY AMONGST STUDENTS - THEY LIKE FISH AS MUCH AS HAMBURGERS
Young people in Cagliari prefer fish above all else.  The city's students' favourite dishes are lobster and friend squid, followed by roasted gilthead and bass, fish fingers and main meals with an octopus base are on top of the list.  This statistic appears even more significant when you consider that lobster shares the top places on the list with roast chicken.  Also, hamburgers considered to be a delicacy by children are in third place, right alongside the squid.
The other types of food appearing in the list of top ten favourites are chicken schnitzels, the beef steak and boiled cod.

BLACK DAY FOR SARDINIAN SOCCER
In Serie B, Cagliari plays better than the Salernitana in Salerno.  It has the advantage of having a greater number of players for 25 minutes but it loses 1-0 and is now at the bottom of the list.  The Torres team in Serie C1 loses in Chieti 2-0 against the home team and is still in danger of relegation.  Volley Cagliari also loses in Serie B of the Volleyball Championship.

DECEMBER 2001

2nd December

"PILI" COUNCIL'S SYNERGY PLAN
Berlusconi has delegated the task of preparing a new agreement between the State and Sardinia to the President of the Regional Council, Pili and the Minister for Government Program Implementation, Pisanu.  In the meantime, the first Council meeting, chaired by Pili, was held yesterday.  He gave the Council a report on the outcome of the meeting he had yesterday with Berlusconi at Palazzo Chigi and gave advance notice of a forthcoming meeting to be held in Sardinia between the Regional Authorities and representatives from the Italian, French and Algerian Governments.  The purpose of the meeting will be to lay out the plans for the construction of a methane pipeline, which will be laid out from Algeria to France and Italy via Corsica.

"MELIS" EXTORTION CASE: HEARING IN PALERMO FOR GRAUSO AND LIORI
The trial, which originated from the second inquiry into the kidnapping of Silvia Melis, has begun in the Court in Palermo.  Silvia Melis had been abducted in Tortoli on February 19, 1997 and set free in the countryside between Orgosolo and Nuoro after nine months in captivity.
The criminal proceedings are being carried out in Palermo due to existing territorial jurisdiction originating from Judge Luigi Lombardini's initial involvement in the case.  The Judge committed suicide in August 1998 after having been interrogated by the Sicilian Anti-Mafia Task Force.
The Court has to examine lawyer, Luigi Garau, editor, Nicola Grauso and former editor of "Unione Sarda", Antonangelo Liori's involvement.  They are accused of having committed aggravated extortion towards Tito Melis and slander against the Cagliari District Prosecutor, Carlo Piana and Assistant Prosecutor, Mauro Mura.

DISCOUNTED FARES, "VOLARE" IS READY
«Volare», the airline that won exclusive rights to the Cagliari-Milan route in the international tender, has announced that it is ready to introduce discounted services from December 16.  Tore Amadu, the newly elected Regional Councillor responsible for Transport, has also asked for a "good will gesture" from the other airlines.  With the aim of finalising the Cagliari-Milan schedules, Volare has asked for an expeditious allocation of slots, both at Cagliari and Milan in order to enable them to promptly advise passengers of the new timetables.  However, the risk of the appeal regarding the international section of the Tender being lodged with the Regional Administrative Court [TAR] by Meridiana is still pending.  The loss of this route has forced the Aga Khan's airline to dismiss 10 per cent of its staff.  And Meridiana employees have immediately embarked on a tough dispute procedure designed to defend their jobs.

ATTACKS - ISLAND ON TOP OF THE LIST ACCORDING TO "SUDGEST" REPORT
Sardinia also appears amongst the list of Regions where, since the end of the great war against the Mafia, Mafia-style attacks or acts of intimidation against local Mayors and Councillors have not ended.  From 1993 to mid-1999, the four Regions of traditional Mafia presence (Campania, Calabria, Puglia and Sicily) together with Sardinia recorded no less than 830 attacks and 886 episodes of intimidation.

COLD STORAGE TRUCKS BLOCKED
During the week, about seventy sheep farmers belonging to the "Cuiles" protest movement blocked traffic on the Olbia-Sassari road at Oschiri.  Their aim was to block the cold storage trucks loaded with meat coming in from the mainland, from France and Germany, which had just been unloaded at the Gallurian ports.  The sheep-farmers are protesting against the embargo placed on Sardinia meat and the delay in measures being taken to resolve the many problems caused by the "Blue Tongue" epidemic.  The blockade created some difficulties for the numerous commuters who travel daily on the Sassari-Olbia road but there were only a few complaints.

BUDDUSÒ: THE TOWNSFOLK WERE MISSING IN THE PIAZZA
The pacifist demonstration held last Saturday night at Buddusò rose like a cry in the wilderness.  It consisted of a Mass and was followed by a procession, the purpose of which was to say no to the wave of violence made up of a whole series of acts of intimidation that have stricken the town in the Coceano area.  Representatives from all the town's political institutions were present.  The Mayor Giovanni Satta led majority and minority parties and setting aside political ideologies; they participated side by side in the demonstration.  The religious institutions and representatives from the Police Force did not fail to attend but there were very few townsfolk present.

NUORO: 25 KILOS OF EXPLOSIVES RECOVERED, RECORD IN THE LAST 10 YEARS
Nearly 25 kilos of explosives - 142 sticks of gelignite - have been found by the Nuoro Carabinieri at Ozzastru, in the Nuoro area.  It is the most important recovery of explosives carried out in the Nuoro province in the last ten years.  Together with the gelignite, two metres of slow burning fuse and some detonators were also recovered.  According to the investigators, the explosive materials were found hidden in a rocky gorge in very good condition and ready to be used.

SOCCER:  FIRST HOME WIN FOR CAGLIARI TEAM
A sudden inspiration on Emiliano Melis' part and Mauro Esposito's penalty shot.  They beat Ancona and overcame Sant'Elia.  Cagliari is again victorious after months of competition spoiled by the excesses of the Ultras [fan club].  Fifteen people were arrested during the clashes between the Police and the Cagliari Ultras before the game between the Sardinian team and Ancona, which ended 2-0 for the home team.  The Police and Carabinieri had to intervene to prevent a fierce group of red and blue supporters from attacking the Ancona fans who last year, had picked on the Cagliari fans.  The DIGOS [Special Operations and General Information Division of Public Security Police] and the Cagliari flying squad are detaining 15 people at Police Headquarters charged with wilful damage, above all for the damages caused to Police vehicles.  At the end of the game, the Ancona fans were escorted to Elmas Airport where they spent the night at a stopover guarded by Police and Carabinieri.
With regard to the Torres team, they sparked general curiosity during the week by entering the splendid Franciscan Monastery dedicated to Saint Peter of Sorres at Borutta for a training retreat.  However, as far as soccer results are concerned, better not to broach the subject.

THE "ZECCHINO D'ORO' ARRIVES IN QUARTUCCIU WITH "THE HICCUP"
BOLOGNA. «The Hiccup», performed by 6-year-old Matteo Bellu from Quartucciu (Cagliari), won the 44th "Zecchino d'Oro" [children's song competition] with 154 votes.  The finals were broadcast live as usual by RAI UNO [main national channel] from the "'Antoniano" in Bologna.  Seven Italian songs and an equal number of foreign ones participated in the competition.  This year the foreign songs were from Argentina, China, Guinea Bissau, India, Ireland, Lithuania and Papua New Guinea.

PANARIELLO'S SHOW IN CAGLIARI
The curtain came down on "Torno sabato" ("cyclone" Panariello's mega-TV show) to the music of «Non potho reposare» [I cannot rest], the magnificent love song in "Limba" performed as a duet by the capable Andrea Parodi and long-limbed Anna Oxa.  The show went to air live on RAI UNO on Saturday, November 24 from Pavilion "E" at the "Fiera" in front of 1,500 lucky spectators.  Panariello's was a variety show of Barnum & Bailey Circus-like proportions.  The comedian from Tuscany appeared last night dressed in traditional Sardinian costume and a "berrita" [traditional peaked cap] on his head.  He had decided to present the entire first part of the program as a tribute to Sardinia.  It began with the appearance of the Neoneli "Coro a Tenores" through to the grand entrance by Benito Urgu dressed in traditional leggings and velvet who continued on into the program with some magnetically charming and convincing comedy sketches.
It's a" circus" that, between first-class guests like international pop stars Sting, Mariah Carey and Italian singer Laura Pausini, prize draws and presentations, (hundreds of millions of Lire have been distributed amongst the studio audience and those watching at home), has accumulated audience ratings of staggering proportions.

TEN THOUSAND LIRE TAX ON PLANE AND SHIP TICKETS
From December 1, travel agents in the Gallura area will charge a ten thousand Lire tax for every plane or ship ticket issued.  "It's a reimbursement for expenses incurred", the agents explain.  "Since the airlines have reduced our commissions, it's the only way not to go bankrupt and as a result, dismiss hundreds of people."

LETTERS TO THE THREE WISE MEN IN SARDINIAN FOR ELEMENTARY SCHOOL COMPETITION
The 'Iscrie una litera a sos tres res' Competition organised by Cagliari publisher "Papiros".  The project is aimed at elementary school children from all over Sardinia who have to write a letter to the Three Wise Men in Sardinian, expressing their opinions on the world of today and their dreams for a better world.  Amongst the aims of the competition is that of stimulating the students' creativity through the recovery of a language that risks being lost.  The best 20 compositions will be awarded prizes during a function to be held on January 6, 2002 and will then be published in a book, together with the others.

THE SARDINIAN SEA AND CULTURE FASCINATE THE ENGLISH
 "Sardinia's Ancient Mysteries" was the full-page banner title, which appeared in "The Times" London newspaper on November 12 last.  Since it was the first day of the "World Travel Market", the newspaper devoted an ample feature on the mysteries of the Sardinian Nuraghi [prehistoric towers] sites, beginning with the Reggia of Barumini.  The land of the Nuraghi, its history and its culture fascinates the English in particular because they seem to be choosing a cultural holiday more and more often.  It is a tendency confirmed by the number of British tour operators who have approached the Island tourism operators manning the exhibition stand organised by ESIT [Sardinian Tourism Industry Body] with enquiries.  This is what has emerged from what those in the know consider to be one of the main tourism trade shows in the world.  It is comparable to the ITB in Berlin and the BIT in Milan, both as far as volume of participation and the importance of the specialised operators in attendance are concerned.  Since 1996, the trend relating to the influx of tourists from the U.K. and the Republic of Ireland into Sardinia has been a positive one.  Every year we are registering a constant increase of nearly 10% and we have gone from 20,000 arrivals in 1996 to 28,357 arrivals in 2000.

11th December

ONE THOUSAND BILLION FOR THE EMERALD COAST
PORTO CERVO - The Emerald Coast, Karim's (Khan) "Paradise Lost", will change hands yet again for one thousand billion Lire.  However, we shouldn't worry, there are no Italian funds involved.  The American flag will continue to fly on the towers of the Hotel Cala di Volpe and on the rooves of the luxurious bungalows at the "Pitrizza".  Starwood is selling and SGI Capital (SGIC) is buying.  At the same time, the forty hectares adjacent to the property known as "La Certosa", which belongs to Silvio Berlusconi [aka "Il Cavaliere], have been purchased (at a cost of six billion Lire or 15,000 Lire per square metre) by the "Cavaliere" himself.  He aims to guarantee himself life-long privacy.

"CONTINUITY" - THE REGIONAL GOVERNMENT WILL PROMOTE AN AGREEMENT BETWEEN MERIDIANA AND VOLARE
The President of the Region, Mauro Pili stated that, "The Regional Government will make every effort to determine and facilitate whatever steps need to be taken in order to avoid that the airlines' current difficulties have a negative impact on employment levels."  The statement was made during a meeting held at Villa Devoto with Meridiana's top management, which was scheduled between a meeting with the various Union Secretaries of CGIL-CISL and UIL and another with the Council for Integrated Territorial Planning.
During the meeting with Meridiana, the President of the Region gave advance notice of a forthcoming meeting with Volare, the purpose of which will be to examine the feasibility of a commercial agreement between the two airlines

SULCIS COAL RE-LAUNCHED BY ITALIAN-AMERICAN ALLIANCE
NURAXI FIGUS - The plan for the gasification of Sulcis coal, originally rejected by the banks as not being profitable enough, is again on the launching pad.  Dusting off the old idea are two new organisations.  American company, Mission Energy and Italian oil company ERG are proposing to create a joint venture with the ATI-Sulcis consortium for the realisation of the 2,000 billion Lire mega-project.
One must keep in mind that at this time coal is an energy source not to be disregarded.  Therefore, its gasification not only has environmental aspects to its credit but it also acts as a deterrent to the rise in the cost of petrol.

RECOMMENDATION - MORE THAN 100 YEARS IN JAIL
LANUSEI - It was a criminal organisation that utilised Mafia-style violence and intimidation as the means for imposing their strategies.  The "brains" of the operation was Maria Ausilia Piroddi, former Secretary of the Ogliastra CGIL [Union].  The second in charge, the man who controlled the military structure, was Adriano Pischedda, entrepreneur and former President of the Forza Italia Club in Barisardo.  The Cagliari Public Prosecutor's Office has no doubts.  In the late Nineties, Piroddi and Pischedda created the first Sardinian Mafia-style operation at Ogliastra.  This is exactly why they should be convicted.  And so should all the members of that "group" who, according to the Prosecutor, terrorised an entire community with threats, bombs and gunfire.  For two years they prevented people from exercising their right to choose freely, effectively putting a stop to a civilised life in the town.

THALASSAEMIA - SARDINIA PENALISED
The Sardinian Microcythemic Hospital's candidature in the assignment of the role of "Italian Referral Centre for the Cure and Prevention of Thalassaemia" seems dangerously in question.  In fact, it seems that the Ministry of Health seems to be leaning towards the selection of the Heaematological Institute of Pesaro, to which it would allocate dedicated funding totalling 60 billion Lire.
Should the Government's decision become concrete reality, it would create severe negative repercussions for the other institutions and health centres in Italy.  It would be quite a blow for the Cagliari Regional Institute for Microcythemias in particular as it has been carrying out highly qualified research in this field for the last few decades.

BOAT ADRIFT - A MYSTERY
There is a mystery in the sea off Castelsardo.  An 11 metre sailing boat flying the French flag was salvaged whilst going adrift.  The jib was torn, its ends wound around the motor's propeller.  There was no sign of the helmsman, a 49-year-old man, who was probably also the owner of the boat.  It is feared that he may have fallen overboard during his voyage and was lost at sea since there was no sight of him for the remainder of the day and into the late night.

SAND FOR POETTO BEACH ABOUT TO ARRIVE
Last week a dredger began to suck up sand from a marine quarry.  The 300,000 square metres of sand are destined for the famous Poetto Beach in Cagliari.  The special ship arrived from Venice to save the coast of the Poetto, which risks disappearing because of man's negligence and erosion caused by the sea and the wind.

UE FUNDS - ONLY SMALL CHANGE UTILISED
The details of the disaster are included in the five lines contained in the table that summarises expenditure undertaken by POR, the Regional program, which is based on European [EEC] funding.  The latest "Community Support Framework" with which Sardinia could recover, risks being wasted.  Up to June 30 this year, expenditure totalled 192 billion Lire out of the 7,536 available or 2.56 per cent of the total.
The possibility is becoming more and more obvious that Sardinia could lose a good opportunity to utilise Community funding, which would guarantee economic and social development, allowing it to catch up with and close the gap between it and the more advanced Regions.

COUNCILLORS INCREASE THEIR OWN SALARIES
With no less than 33 votes for and two against, the Assembly in via Roma decided on a salary increase.  Anyone who doesn't register absences and manages to attend regularly, will receive an even more "interesting" amount of compensation:  3.5 million Lire per month for a Town Councillor and an increase of one hundred thousand Lire for those who also occupy a seat on the Provincial bench.  These are the rates that have been altered upwards and approved (nearly) unanimously.  One could bet that from now on, Council and Provincial Government meetings will be much more crowded.  It is a substantial increase of no less than 70%.

A SKELETON NEARLY TWO METRES LONG AT FORDONGIANUS
An archaeological find of inestimable importance and most probably the only one of its kind in Sardinia.  A few days ago, a burial chamber and a nearly intact skeleton about two metres long were found.  It is a discovery, which will undoubtedly leave a mark on studies of Sardinian history.
The tomb and the skeleton were found in the archaeological site surrounding the Romanic church of San Lussorio, right after having carried out some restructuring work on the "cumbessias" [typical pilgrim houses] situated in front of the church.  The burial chamber was found in the first instance, a tomb that dates back to around the VII-VIII Century AD.  It was situated at a lower level compared to the religious building and probably at the same depth as the Paleochristian crypt underneath the church.  It is a type of tomb, which was very common in the Fenician period and was introduced into Sardinia by the Carthaginians.  Considering the height of the body, which as mentioned before was nearly two metres (190cm to be exact), it was immediately clear that the discovery represented something sensational.  One of the first theories put forward by the archaeologists is that because of the body's height, it could be a soldier.

TEMPIO - TENT THEATRE DESTROYED
The "Palatenda" in Tempio, has been bombed.  Its entrance was damaged in the process.  The huge show-tent, is a large modular structure in which the Rites of "Carrasciali Timpiesu" are celebrated.  The bomb - a powerful explosive device, presumably made up of dozens of sticks of gelignite, the same type as those used in the quarries - was arranged around one of the anchorage pylons in front of the main entrance.

70,000 CUBIC METRES KNOCKED DOWN AT PISCINA REI
COSTA REI - In executing the decree issued on February 28 last by the Cagliari Court of Appeal, SAITUR's legal representative demolished the buildings that were part of the unauthorised division into plots of the same name.  It's a matter of a total of 70,663 cubic metres.
The complex had been built in Piscina Rei, behind the pond of the same name and in an area that is subject to an encumbrance guaranteeing integrated conservation according to regulations contained in the Territorial Environmental Plan No. 13.  The demolition brings to an end the attempt on the part of the Comune of Muravera under whose jurisdiction the complex fell, to purchase the buildings and allocate them to public interest activities.  The representatives of the ecological associations, who for years have been waging legal battles for the protection of the coastal areas against speculative construction, are now satisfied.

ORISTANO - NEIGHBOURHOOD POLICEMAN
Oristano too will have a neighbourhood policeman.  This new type of role will commence on December 1, on an experimental basis, for a period of one year.  The aim is to bring the local residents closer to the Authorities, thereby rendering life in the neighbourhoods more peaceful.  The neighbourhood policeman will initially watch over the Historical Centre and districts that present higher risk and develop preventative measures to fight petty crime.

SPORT
Cagliari loses 1-0 away from home in Como whilst Torres wins 2-0, moving away from the dangerous lower spots on the league table.  The Porto Torres team did very well in the B2 basketball championship, now finding itself in second place.  In the B1 Series, the Banco di Sardegna Sassari team has also done well this year and has remained one of the favourites.

16th December

AirOne WINS APPEAL:  ENTIRE PROCESS BEGINS AGAIN
"Continuità territoriale" [Territorial Continuity] or rather, the prospect of Sardinians travelling by air at heavily discounted fares seemed to be within reach but it now becomes a pipedream again.  The Consiglio di Stato [highest administrative court] has granted the Appeal lodged by AirOne against its exclusion from the international tender by the Technical Committee and confirmed by the Regional Administrative Tribunal (TAR) in Lazio.  Therefore AirOne, which had been excluded in favour of Alitalia, Meridiana and Volare, re-enters the race.  It seems that the release date of the discounted fares on the routes from Sardinian ports to Milan and Rome set by Minister Lunardi will be postponed until after December 31.
The routes have been allocated to Alitalia, Meridiana and Volare the last of which snatched long-standing historical route Cagliari-Milan away from the Olbia-based airline.  From that moment on, the appeals began to be lodged thick and fast.

DISCOUNTED AIR FARES - REGIONAL GOVERNMENT ASKS FOR SPEEDY RESOLUTION
After decisions are made, unfailingly, the controversy begins.  Whilst commuters and migrants organise a vociferous protest, ENAC's [Italian Civil Aviation Authority] decision to tackle the problem with a two-pronged approach, has unleashed a fiery political debate, as well as angry reactions from Sardinian residents.  ENAC plans to go ahead with the discounted fares on the uncontested routes and to re-examine the results of the tender process for the others.  The Regional Councillor responsible for Transport has indicated he is hoping for an urgent convocation of a meeting of the Committee, which will have to re-examine the airlines' proposals for the routes that link Cagliari and Alghero to Rome and Milan.  And so, the never-ending struggle for the introduction of "Continuità Territoriale" continues, between Utopia and a semblance of reality.

BLUE TONGUE - VACCINATION PLAN TO BEGIN IN EARLY JANUARY
They will start vaccinating from January 2.  The Councillor responsible for Health has issued an order for preventative treatment against Blue Tongue, which will be carried out on sheep, goats, cattle and buffalo.  The vaccination program should be completed by April 30 but could take longer for the sheep and goats.  In the meantime, the Faculty of Veterinary Science warns that the vaccination program will not give the hoped for results and complains that the Regional Government has never contributed to the research.

SHEEP'S MILK - PRODUCTION HAS DECREASED BY 30%
Sardinia has recorded a bad start to its dairy sales campaign for 2001-2002.  The initial data for a little over a month since the re-opening of the dairies indicate a downward trend of more than 30% in the production of milk.  The size of the decrease does not augur well for the remainder of the sales campaign.

SOGEAAL TO BREAK ITS AGREEMENT WITH RYANAIR
ALGHERO - The Company that manages Alghero Airport is no longer in a position to honour the agreement made with Irish airline, Ryanair, which has guaranteed a daily flight from Alghero to London since June 2000.  The agreement will probably be cancelled in the next few days.

THE NEW CALANGIANESE ECONOMIC MIRACLE
The economy of Calangianus is traditionally tied to the production of cork, which during the forthcoming Christmas period will be celebrated with the popping of corks from millions of bottles.  During the last few Christmas periods, however, there have also been toys that are "Made in Calangianus" on the market.  These are the small coloured magnetic bars called Geomag, manufactured by Plastwood with which one can create a variety of constructions like the Eiffel Tower, pyramids, skyscrapers, etc.  It's a game that doesn't only captivate children.
It's all thanks to three local entrepreneurs, Giovanni, Edoardo and Enrico Tusacciu.  The machines that produce 50 thousand little magnetic bars per day have never stopped since September 1, generating a turnover of 120 million Lire per day.  These days, a steady stream of people comes to visit the business - Chinese, Austrians, Israelis, Spaniards, Swiss and Germans - all talking about Calangianus.

FOUND - 15 THOUSAND TRAPS ABANDONED BY POACHERS
15 thousand items consisting of traps and springes were gathered in the space of a week by about fifty environmental volunteers who arrived from every part of Italy.  The collection of items gathered by the "Lega per l'abolizione della caccia" [League for the Abolition of Hunting] confirms that poaching and bird catching practices are still alive and well.  Naturally this is not surprising.  The valleys around Capoterra, where the items were collected, have always been a safe haven for poachers in search of easy prey.
All types of animals end up in the traps, not only the thrushes, which can be caught legally during the hunting season, but also the tiny redbreasts, which are protected during this period.

REGIONAL COUNCIL ALLOCATES 15 BILLION LIRE TO TOURIST SPOTS
The Sardinian Regional Council has approved a series of initiatives designed to develop tourism-oriented ports on the Island.  Overall, 10 billion Lire have been allocated in 2001, to which should be added another 5 billion Lire already pledged, also in 2001, for the benefit of the San Teodoro tourism facilities.  The new initiatives are aimed at the ports of Calasetta, Cala Gonne, Golfo Aranci, Teulada, Alghero and Buggerru.
In the majority of cases it is a matter of completing projects already initiated by previous modernisation programs.  However, in Cala Gonone's case, the project would entail the expansion of its port facilities because it is currently too small to cater for the requirements of its high volume of tourism traffic and requires adequate facilities, first of which are maritime services.

DAWN OF TERROR IN THREE APARTMENT BUILDINGS
SASSARI - The flames shot up very high, to the point of licking against the fifth floor of an apartment building in the heart of the Monte Rosello district.  The penetrating smell of gas wafted around the area whilst the residents of the large condominium were leaving their apartments in great haste.
For a few hours the fear was real and the tension high.  It was all due to a large overflowing gas cylinder, which had suddenly caught fire because of a leak from a valve caused by a faulty washer.

FIRST SNOW FALLS IN THE NUORO AREA - TRAFFIC PROBLEMS
More than twenty centimetres of snow fell during the night at Fonni in the Nuoro area.  The entire Gennargentu massif turned white after the first snowfall of the season.  When they awoke, Nuoro residents too found Mount Ortobene covered with snow.  However, in the city very little snow fell and it melted straight away.

SOCCER
Yet another disappointing tie (2-2) at home for Cagliari against the Pistoia team, which is also in danger of being relegated to a minor league.  A beautiful victory for Torres in the C1 Championship, however.  They played the Fermana team away from home and won 0-1.

23th December

MERRY CHRISTMAS AND HAPPY NEW YEAR FROM ALL OF US AT ISOLASARDA!

*** NEWS REVIEW ***
ISLAND HOSPITALS LAST ON THE LIST FOR SAFETY
Sicily and Sardinia - safety zero. The hospitals on the two large Islands remain on the bottom of the list of hospitals compiled by "Cittadinanzattiva-Tribunale per i diritti del malato" [Patients' Rights Movement].  All except the Brotzu Hospital in Cagliari, where the local Tribunal for Patients' Rights intervened on its behalf.  In 2001, "Cittadinanzattiva" mobilised 70 monitoring groups, scattered all over Italy.  Thereby, they were able to monitor an equal number of hospitals and through personal observation or by interviewing staff, were able to gather a considerable amount of information.  That information contained the necessary data that would enable them to evaluate 235 basic indicators and 24 complex factors, representative of the typical aspects of safety.  From a safety aspect, the worst two hospitals are the ones in Alghero and San Cataldo (in the Province of Caltanissetta).  Not one Sardinian hospital appears in the first twelve of the top band (the good ones).  The ho
spital in Bosa appears in the next category, which is made up of 21 locations.

UNEMPLOYMENT - ONLY THREE OTHER REGIONS WORSE OFF
Punctual as always, ISTAT [Italian National Statistical Institute] has released its annual statistical publication, which covers the Italian situation for the previous year.  Sardinia has received grim confirmation that it is one of the Regions with the highest level of unemployment.  20.6% of its active population is out of work.  The only Regions worse off are Calabria (26 per cent), Sicily (24 per cent) and Campania (23.7 per cent).  The Alto Adige Region has the lowest level of unemployment at 2.1%.

ALARMING INCREASE IN ROBBERIES ON THE ISLAND
BENETUTTI - The ferocity of the rogues who do not hesitate to beat up elderly, weak and defenceless people in a cowardly manner is on the increase.  After the Torpè (Nuoro) case where an 85-year-old man was bashed and robbed of his weapons, there has been another such episode of violence.  This time it occurred in Benetutti (Sassari).  Two or maybe three delinquents entered a house where two 80-year-old sisters live and immediately attacked one of them, pushing her to the ground and ordering her to "hand over everything you've got!"

WHERE'S THE AGREEMENT ON THE PAPER MILL?
ARBATAX - Varying news items continue to follow each other day by day.  Nevertheless it seems there is only one certainty in the tiring case of the Arbatax paper mill: that the word "end" has yet to be written.  In fact, one day there is talk that it is probably merely a postponement to the project going ahead.  Whilst the next day, new complications arise with the Department of Treasury relating to the CIPE [Interdepartmental Committee for Economic Planning] resolution regarding the approval of the Plan Contract for the paper mill area.

"SARDINIA FERRIES" BRING FORWARD DISCOUNTS TO SARDINIANS
CAGLIARI - "Sardinia-Corsica Ferries" has announced that for the next few months (until March) it will offer discounted fares on the new Golfo Aranci-Livorno route to Sardinians.  The proposal is worthy of particular attention, both because it effectively brings forward the concept of "Continuità Territoriale" by sea, on which the Region is planning to aim after having achieved "Continuity" by air and because the company introducing these discounted fares is a Sardinia/Corsica joint venture.

ISLAND SWEPT BY ICY WIND
The bad weather did not spare Sardinia: low temperatures, snowfalls in the Nuoro area and a Grecale [Mediterranean wind coming from Greece] windstorm in the Gulf of Asinara and in the Sassari area.  During the night, the Mercury in the thermometers in the towns around the Gennargentu and the Limbara, even went down to -2°C.  There were abundant snowfalls in the areas above 800 metres: the mantle of snow was 20 centimetres deep and more than 30 centimetres on Mount Spada, where tourism operators are preparing ski facilities.  In the coastal areas, temperatures varied from 5° to 10°.

BAD WEATHER - MN MAJESTIC DEPARTS WITH 24 HOUR DELAY
Motor vessel "Majestic's" odyssey ended after nearly 24 hours.  Having set sail from Genoa, the ship was due to arrive at Porto Torres at 7.30 a.m. where she was unable to dock because of the strong Grecale wind that at times reached a maximum of 55 knots.  The wind in the North of Sardinia had at times reached a maximum of 142 kms per hour).  It eased considerably during the night and the ship, travelling at minimum speed in the opposite direction to the motion of the waves between Asinara and Corsica, managed to enter the industrial port at 7.00 p.m.

IT COULD BE THE END OF THE LONG DRY SPELL
The cold snap caught pretty much everyone unawares in the city.  The change from the heat of last week to the intense cold last week-end was rather traumatic.  The sudden drop in temperature brought the snow to the mountains of the Gerrei and the other high ground around the Cagliari area.  According to the Sardinian Regional Agrometeorological Service, the intense cold and the snowfalls will continue over the next few days and it is hoped that there will be a gradual accumulation of water for the replenishment of the artificial basins and dams.  It is no coincidence that the snow was received favourably by operators in the agricultural sector because of the reserve of water that is building up after the long dry spell.  A period that, particularly in the lower parts of the Campidano and in the Sulcis-Iglesiente area, had caused the water collection basins to dry out and forced them to keep the taps closed for half a day every day for some months.

EVERY YEAR MORE THAN ONE THOUSAND SARDINIANS CONTINUE TO EMIGRATE FOR WORK REASONS
They have a sense of belonging to the land, a profound attachment to the customs and traditions of their birthplace and a need to preserve their cultural identity.  These are the typical features of Island emigrants.  These facts emerged from the Regional Congress of the "Italian Association for the Protection of Emigrants and their Families" (AITEF), assembled together to discuss the federation's role with regard to "Emigration and Globalisation".
It is a phenomenon that affects overseas countries in particular as they are also principal destinations for the more than one thousand Sardinians who every year decide to leave the Island in search of permanent employment.

GERMAN AND BRITISH TOURIST NUMBERS INCREASE
CAGLIARI - According to data released by ESIT [Sardinian Tourism Industries Authority], 2001 will close with a considerable increase in British and German tourist arrivals.  2002 is looking very good and not even the current international crisis seems to be able to stop this trend.
Germany has confirmed Sardinia as one of its most sought after destinations and the German tourism operators have made it their top product sold.  The increase in numbers of German tourists who have chosen to visit Sardinia this year touches peaks of 26%.  And if in 2000, Spain was on top of the Germans' list of preferred destinations, in 2001 Italy has jumped up to first place with Sardinia as the main attraction.

SARDINIAN ANTHEM - THE IDEA APPEALS TO THE CAGLIARI PROVINCE
They all sang it standing up as if it was a solemn and special moment.  Probably the most famous song of the Sardinian feeling, the anthem is "Procurade 'e moderare" by Francesco Ignazio Mannu.
Promoted by the "Sardista" Group within the Provincial Government, a conference was held on Giovanni Maria Angloy, one of the noble fathers of the Island, the individual and his work and celebrating the 250th anniversary of his birth.  A motion was presented and passed, which will be transformed into an appeal to be sent to the Regional Council.  The appeal requests the institution of Mannu's ode as the Island's official anthem.

30 December

MERRY CHRISTMAS AND HAPPY NEW YEAR FROM ALL OF US AT ISOLASARDA!

*** NEWS REVIEW ***
ALITALIA LEFT WITH ONLY CAGLIARI-ROME
ROME - Yesterday, the Minister for Transport, Pietro Lunardi, signed the ministerial decree, which ratifies the result of the new tender for the provision of discounted air fares on the Cagliari-Rome, Cagliari-Milan, Alghero-Rome and Alghero-Milan routes.  The first one went to Alitalia (that extraordinarily, however, is excluded from Alghero), the other three went to AirOne, which was excluded from the first tender and then re-admitted by the Consiglio di Stato [highest administrative court] that had granted its appeal.
Volare, which had been awarded the Cagliari-Milan route in the first tender, claims it's an "obscene decision" and announces it will lodge an appeal in order to stop the new allocation.
Still on the Cagliari-Milan route, as well as Volare's appeal, Meridiana's appeal to the TAR [Regional Administrative Tribunal] is also pending.
Since so much time has been wasted on the new tender, the latest deadline for the introduction of the new fares and routes has been moved to 31 January 2002 but only for AirOne.  Alitalia and Meridiana (the airlines responsible for the links from Olbia to Rome e Milan), however, must be in a position to go ahead by 31 December 2001.  Under the guidelines of "Continuità Territoriale", travelling to Rome when departing from Cagliari, Olbia or Alghero will cost Lit.65,800.  The trip to Milan from any of the three Sardinian ports will cost a little more: Lit.82,400.  The discounted fares are obviously also applicable to trips from the mainland to Sardinia.  They will be available to residents as well as for Sardinian migrants, the disabled, young people aged from 2 to 25 years of age, university students to 27 years of age and senior citizens over 70 years of age.
Normal full fares applicable are: Lit.138,900 one-way for Olbia-Rome; Lit.164,350 on the Cagliari-Rome, Alghero-Rome and Olbia-Milan routes; Lit.214,400 for Cagliari-Milan and Alghero-Milan.

PIRODDI WAS NOT THE "BRAINS" OF A MAFIA GANG
LANUSEI - The noxious weed of Mafia activity has not yet spread to Sardinia.  This is the judgement delivered by the judges at the Court in Nuoro, which has shattered the District Prosecutor's theory, according to which a disturbing change in criminal activity had occurred between 1996 and 1998.
Therefore, it wasn't the Mafia.  And in that case, Maria Ausilia Piroddi, former Secretary of CGIL [labour union] from Tortolì, wasn't and could not have been the "brains" of a criminal organisation, which was aiming at conquering political power through the use of bombs and gunfire.  If Maria Ausilia Piroddi managed to get through the first trial for Mafia activities unscathed, the same can't be said for Adriano Pischedda, the entrepreneur from Barisardo who was found guilty of two attacks and sentenced to ten years in jail.

TRAGIC LOSS FOR SARDINIAN WOMEN'S SOCCER
SASSARI - They were catapulted out of the van on which they were travelling.  The driver of the vehicle, Francesco Carta and a 21-year-old girl, Claudia Atzeni from Balnei, died on the spot.  Another girl, 15-year-old Giorgia Fiacco from Tortolì, died the following day in the hospital in Sassari.  The other two girls travelling on the same vehicle suffered slight injuries.  The girls, part of the Tortolì C League Women's Soccer Team, were travelling towards Alghero, where they were due to play a game against the «Monte Rosello» team.  Giorgia Fiacco's heart now beats in the body of a thirteen-year-old from Palermo.  The transplant was carried out in the Paediatric Cardiac Surgery ward in a hospital in the Sicilian capital.

TOBACCO MANUFACTURER CLOSES DOWN
CAGLIARI - The death knell has sounded for one of the oldest factories on the Island.  The machinery for the production of cigarettes in the Manifattura Tabacchi factory in Cagliari has been deactivated and its employees have hoisted a banner at half-mast, actually ratifying the funeral rites for the factory.  At the same time, it criticised politicians and local institutions and denounced the fact that this would mean the beginning of a period of uncertainty for 180 employees who, until midday on Saturday, had operated the machinery that produced "Nazionali" brand cigarettes.
The "Manifattura" is a factory that represented much more than a production site for the city.  Founded in the middle of the Eighteenth Century, in the early Nineteenth Century it symbolised the place of redemption for the female cigar pieceworkers.  They were the first in Italy to organise themselves against working conditions not easily imaginable today and went out on strike demanding to better those conditions.  Afterwards, the "Manifattura" factory became one of the most representative focal points of productivity for the city, providing jobs to thousands of male and female workers during the last century.   Now the "Manifattura" is definitely closing, together with another 14 plants that belong to ETI, Ente Tabacchi Italiano [Italian Tobacco Authority], the former State Monopoly body.  Only five plants will remain operational of which only one will be located in the South of Italy, in Lecce.  The cigarette depot will remain at Macchiareddu in Sardinia.  The fixtures and fitting
s will be discarded or dismantled and sold to Eastern Bloc countries where the cigarette market is constantly on the rise.

FIRE CREATES PANIC IN SARROCH
A large fire broke out in the refinery last week and in the space of a few moments there was general alarm.  The tall flames and dense smoke could be sighted from very far away.  It was thanks to the prompt intervention by the internal fire fighters that a tragedy was averted.  Many were frightened but fortunately no one was injured or intoxicated by the smoke.  The damages were only slight and limited to the destruction of some pumps and tubes.  Some crude oil had leaked from a defective duct at around 7.00 a.m. when the night shift was getting ready to go off duty.

THE "MONSTER": SEARCH WARRANTS ISSUED FOR TUSCANY AND SARDINIA
The Police carried out some searches today in the Florence provincial precinct and in the Nuoro area as part of the framework of the investigation into the "Monster of Florence" and the so-called "Sardinian trail".  The investigators were searching for some useful new clues regarding the crimes committed in 1974 and 1981, which, together with the one committed in 1968 have yet to be solved.
The Police carried out checks regarding certain Sardinian individuals who, however, are not under suspicion.
The investigators had abandoned the "Sardinian trail" in the late Eighties.
In 1997, however, it was taken up again vigorously because of the link between Pacciani and Francesco Vinci who was Barbara Locci's lover and the first one arrested in 1982 during the inquiry into the "Monster".
Vinci was released from jail the following year because the maniac had killed again.

"KUILES" PROTEST: THEY WALL UP THE ENTRANCE TO THE BANK
SASSARI - They "walled up" the entrance to the "Bank of  the Sardinians".
It was a demonstrative action, which had a great spectacular effect.  It was carried out with incredible ability and at breakneck speed.  A wall built with small blocks, more than a metre high and "put up" by a very enthusiastic team of .desperadoes.  They were just country people, farmers and shepherds who briefly took on the role of bricklayers so as to denounce their terrible financial situation, in the strongest possible way.  And to do this, they chose Sardinia's financial symbol, the "Banco di Sardegna".

THE CHILDREN OF THE SECOND MILLENNIUM COME OUT OF THEIR SHELLS - AN AWAKENING THAT LEADS US TO HOPE
These children of the "flower children" of the 1968 protest days have already won.  It needed Letizia Moratti and her umpteenth proposal for the reform of education to make the children of the second millennium come out of their shells.  It is a rage, which was born on the quiet not even a month ago and exploded in the last few days in the form of large demonstrations that consisted of protest marches, which made thousands of students pour out into the streets of Sardinia and all of Italy.  Some wrongly assumed that this new generation only fed itself on mobile phones, SMS, mopeds and Nike but their rebellion managed to involve everyone, regardless of the group to which they belonged.  Unfortunately, it was actually in Cagliari that some clashes occurred and were instigated by some well-known groups of Ultras [fanatics] who sneaked into the students' demonstrations to create disorder.

CAGLIARI - THIRD MAN INVOLVED IN 1999 ROBBERY CONVICTED
Andrea Floris has been convicted for having taken part in the robbery at the Banca di Sassari in piazza Garibaldi in the centre of Cagliari on 6 September 1999.  Floris will have to serve fourteen years in prison (two of which he has already served).  And he will also have to make a payment on account of Lit.100 million, as partial compensation for the lengthy and complicated medical treatment still being undertaken by the Assistant Director of the bank, Giuseppe D'Agostino who has taken out a civil suit against Floris.  Contrary to what occurred to Pietro Floris (sentenced to 16 years) and Carmelino Soru (12 years), who were caught red-handed with their weapons in hand, Andrea Floris was apprehended and arrested at Villamar two days after the robbery, which yielded Lit.197 million.

MAJOR WORKS EVEN IN SARDINIA
CAGLIARI - Sardinia will become the "Euro Mediterranean Logistical Platform".
The decision is contained in an Interdepartmental Committee resolution, which has included Sardinia amongst other important national strategic projects.  The Interdepartmental Committee for Economic Planning has allocated Lit.770billion for the development of maritime transport intermodality in Sardinia.

REMOTE-CONTROLLED BOMB USED IN EXECUTION
ASSEMINI - Two months ago he escaped death because the bomb wasn't powerful enough to blow up the car.  However, his rivals in drug trafficking had sworn that he would die.  Last night 50-year-old Giuseppe Loddi from Cagliari died further to an attack on his life, which was carried out in front of a primary school in corso Europa, just 100 metres from the Carabinieri barracks.

ORGOSOLO DEDICATES A PIAZZA TO DON MUNTONI
They were emotional moments when the Mayor, Pasquale Mereu unveiled the plaque in memory of, Don Graziano Muntoni, the Catholic priest slayed on Christmas Eve morning three years ago.  It was an inexplicable ferocious crime, which still remains unsolved.  Therefore, Orgosolo doesn't want to forget.  It doesn't want to forget that man who had worked above all with children.

SARDINIAN FISH WILL HAVE «DOC» CERTIFICATION
CAGLIARI - Six enterprises that operate in the field of mariculture have taken the initiative to apply for the DOC [Certification of Controlled Origin] trademark for Island fish.  They will form a cooperative at the beginning of January 2002 after which the Regional Government will give its support to the application.  The cooperative plans to enter into the emerging markets, into the organised distribution markets in Sardinia and above all the markets on the mainland, which require volumes of production unattainable by a single fishery.

SPORT
Cagliari lost the mid-week match at Empoli 2-1, precipitating down to the second-last place in the B Series Championship.  The change of coach (Sonetti has arrived) augured well on Sunday when Cagliari beat Genoa 2-1.


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