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MAYOR

Rome mayor reticent on 2024 Olympic bid

Rome mayor Virginia Raggi remains reticent on her city's bid to host the 2024 Olympics, saying that it would be better to first think about "abandoned municipal installations".

Rome mayor reticent on 2024 Olympic bid
Rome Mayor Virginia Raggi argues that the Olympics are not a priority for the capital. Photo: Filippo Monteforte/AFP

Speaking on Monday during a visit of the Italian Paralympic delegation preparing to take part in the September 7th-18th Rio Games, Raggi said: “In September, after the summer, we'll tell Gianni Malago (co-president of the candidacy committee) what we think about Rome 2024.

“Let's first think about abandoned municipal installations and sport in schools,” she added in comments reported by La Gazzetta dello Sport.

“It's starting with these installations that we must begin to rebuild sport. The Olympic Games are a great sporting moment, but one is not born Olympic, one becomes it.”

Raggi was elected mayor in June, continually repeating in her campaign that the Games were not a priority for the Italian capital.

Rome is one of four candidates to host the Olympics in 2024 along with Paris, Budapest and Los Angeles. The quartet must submit the second part of their candidacy by October 7th.

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ROME

Body of missing American tourist found in Rome’s River Tiber

The body of a missing 21-year-old tourist was found in the River Tiber on Thursday morning, according to media reports.

Body of missing American tourist found in Rome's River Tiber

Elijah Oliphant, from Dallas, Texas, was on holiday with his family in Rome when he went missing several days ago.

Oliphant’s parents reported his disappearance after he left his hotel room shortly after midnight on May 24th and did not return.

Hotel security footage showed him leaving the premises wearing a white undershirt and pyjama bottoms, which he was wearing when he was found.

Oliphant’s corpse was reportedly spotted by passersby near the Ponte Sisto bridge in Rome’s Trastevere district around 10am on Thursday morning. His body was positively identified by his parents.

Members of the fire brigade and river police who recovered the body say there were no obvious signs of violence, but an autopsy will be conducted to determine the cause of death. Trastevere police are reportedly investigating the matter.

The Oliphant family had arrived in Rome for a holiday on May 23rd. When Elijah went missing the following day, his parents launched an urgent appeal to help find their son.

His disappearance was featured on the missing persons television show, Chi l’ha visto (‘Who’s seen them?’) on May 25th.

Several foreigners have been found drowned in the Tiber in recent years, though there are no indication that any of the incidents are linked.

In 2016, the body of 19-year-old American student Beau Solomon was recovered from the river.

Rough sleeper Massimo Galioto was charged involuntary manslaughter in the case, but was ultimately acquitted in 2020.

Prosecutors said that Galioto pushed Solomon in the course of a violent argument. Galioto’s defense team acknowledged that the two had argued but said the student had accidentally slipped.

In May 2019, 37-year-old Imen Chatbouri, a former athletics champion from Tunisia, was found dead in the Tiber after a night out. CCTV footage later showed she had been pushed from the Ponte Sisto bridge.

A then-26-year-old man whose advances she had rejected earlier that evening was convicted of her murder in November 2021.

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