Italy counts quake cost in home­less, her­itage

The Myanmar Times - - World -

ITALY’S most pow­er­ful earth­quake in 36 years has left more than 15,000 peo­ple home­less, au­thor­i­ties said, as the scale of the dam­age done to ir­re­place­able historic build­ings be­came ap­par­ent.

Al­though the 6.6-mag­ni­tude tremor on Oc­to­ber 30 did not re­sult in any deaths, the third pow­er­ful quake in just over two months has left thou­sands of homes in ru­ins or struc­turally un­safe and emp­tied a string of vil­lages and small towns across the coun­try’s moun­tain­ous cen­tral re­gions.

The series of tremors, all fol­lowed by pow­er­ful after­shocks, proved the fi­nal straw for a num­ber of im­por­tant ar­chi­tec­tural land­marks, in­clud­ing the Abbey of Sant-Eu­tizio in Um­bria.

With roots dat­ing back to the 5th cen­tury, the abbey is one of the old­est monas­tic sites in Italy and was cel­e­brated for both its 12th-cen­tury Ro­manesque fa­cade and its Re­nais­sance bell­tower.

The na­tional civil pro­tec­tion agency said it was pro­vid­ing as­sis­tance to 15,000 peo­ple af­fected by the quake, which was so pow­er­ful it caused cracks in build­ings in Rome, some 120 kilo­me­tres (75 miles) away.

Other ar­chi­tec­tural gems de­stroyed in­cluded the 14th-cen­tury Basil­ica of St Bene­dict in Nor­cia and the 13th-cen­tury Civic Tower in Ama­trice.

The quake was Italy’s big­gest since a 6.9-mag­ni­tude one struck the south of the coun­try in 1980, leav­ing 3000 peo­ple dead. –

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