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ITALY

Italy’s 5,000-year-old ‘iceman’ brought to life by 3D printer

Scientists presented on Wednesday a life-sized copy, made using a 3D printer, of Oetzi the mummified 5,000-year-old "iceman" found in the Alps 25 years ago.

Italy's 5,000-year-old 'iceman' brought to life by 3D printer
Oetzi, Italy's 5,000-year-old iceman, has been recontructed using a 3D printer. Photo: Andreas Solaro/AFP

Pre-existing CT scans were used to make the resin replica which was then sculpted and hand-painted by US artist Gary Staab over many months, the South Tyrol Museum of Archaeology, where Oetzi is housed, said.
   
“The reconstruction of the hands was a challenge, since they could not be captured on CT scans,” the museum in Bolzano, northern Italy said.
   
Three replicas were made, one of which will be part of a travelling exhibition that will tour North America, starting in the North Carolina Museum of Natural Science in Raleigh in October 2017.
   
The second and the third replicas will be used for teaching purposes at the Cold Spring Harbor DNA Learning Center in New York (DNALC).
   
In what became an archaeological sensation, Oetzi's mummified remains were found high in the Oetztal Alps – hence the name – by hikers in September 1991 after being preserved in the ice since the Stone Age.
   
Clothing and equipment including an axe and a backpack found at the site, as well as the contents of Oetzi's stomach, his DNA and his 61 tattoos gave scientists highly valuable insights into human life at the time.
   
He died a violent death, killed by an arrow, around the age of 45. He was 1.6 metres (five foot, three inches) tall, weighed 50 kilos (110 pounds), had brown eyes and was lactose intolerant.

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ITALY

Italy’s Renzi wants ex-ECB boss Draghi to become prime minister: report

Ex-PM Matteo Renzi would like to see former European Central Bank chief Mario Draghi become prime minister of Italy, a party source told Reuters on Sunday.

Italy's Renzi wants ex-ECB boss Draghi to become prime minister: report
Matteo Renzi. Image: Andreas Solaro/ POOL / AFP

“I would say that is one of our proposals,” confirmed the source, who declined to be named.

The Italian government collapsed last week when PM Giuseppe Conte resigned. The former coalition allies are currently trying to come to an agreement and sort out their differences.

The centre-left government had been in turmoil ever since former premier Matteo Renzi withdrew his Italia Viva party earlier this month, a move that forced Conte to step down this week.

During the past year, Renzi frequently criticised Conte’s management of the pandemic and economic crisis.

Italy’s La Stampa newspaper also reported on Sunday that President Sergio Mattarella was considering Draghi for the prime ministerial role. However, Mattarella’s office promptly denied this, saying there had been no contact between them.

So far, there has been no comment from Draghi, who hasn't been seen much in the public eye since 2019.


Italy's president, Sergio Mattarella, gave ruling parties more time on Friday to form a new government, after the resignation of Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte. 

Coalition parties Italia Viva, the centre-left Democratic Party (PD) and anti-establishment 5-Star Movement must come to an agreement to allow the government to heal. 

Renzi, a former prime minister himself, has pubilcly stated that he does not want to talk about who should lead the next government at this stage, reasoning that the parties need to agree on a way forward first.

“Any effort today to fuel a discussion about Draghi is offensive to Draghi and above all to the president of the republic,” Renzi said in an interview published on Sunday with Corriere della Sera.

A senior Italia Viva lawmaker also told Reuters that “If the president gives a mandate to Draghi, we would certainly support this”. 

Renzi, whose party is not even registering three percent support in opinion polls, quit the coalition over Conte’s handling of the COVID-19 pandemic and his plans for spending more than 200 billion euros from a European Union fund to help Italy’s damaged economy.

READ ALSO: Why do Italy's governments collapse so often?

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